When They Go Low, We Go High. Keeping Your Head In The Age Of The Keyboard Warrior.Mar 10, 2021
By Tricia Scott
Like most people, I’ve read a few articles online about the good and bad effect that our digital age has on us as humans. The continued rise of Social Media is discussed at length and in great detail.
Our younger generations, in particular, it seems, are struggling more than ever. They are under ever-growing pressure to be like this or look like that or have this or that. It’s relentless, and it doesn’t show any signs of letting up anytime soon. Throw in some negative comments, and it becomes almost impossible to switch off from or to deal with.
It got me to thinking about the way we use social media for our businesses or our work.
Making the decision to put yourself out into the digital world is hard. There’s no doubt about it, it can be downright brutal at times. Personal social media is one thing, but putting your work out to the anonymous masses takes She-Ra Princess of Power levels of bravery. I don’t think it makes a difference who you are. You could be the most talented, confident person on the platform and still feel like you’ve gone ten rounds with Tyson after a few negative comments are thrown your way. Opinions are strong on social media. Literally, anything can invoke a reaction, and they have the power to make or break our day.
It’s easy to say, ‘it’s just social media, ignore it!’ I used to think like that too, I mean come on, who cares anyway??
The truth is, we do. To some extent, we all care what people think about us and our work, of course we do! We made it!
How often do you see negativity online? I would hazard a guess at daily at the very least. What do you think when you see it? If the person it’s aimed at appears confident, are famous, have money, cars and lots of stuff does that make you think differently? Do you assume that it just bounces right off them because they have lots of things? Let me assure you, it doesn’t. Words can harm and in some cases, kill. Low self-esteem is one of the most significant contributors to suicide in 20–34-year-olds and its rising. We all have a part to play.
I speak to many entrepreneurs who are staying small in their work (and they are doing fantastic work) because they don’t want to face a bigger audience. They’re afraid to shine too brightly because it brings out the internet Trolls (think Gollum climbing out from under rocks for shiny things). This makes me so sad. Imagine never giving your best because someone might not like you or want to bring you down to make them feel better about themselves.
So what happens when they go low? We go high. Thank you, Michelle Obama, this quote is everything.
Hateful, spiteful comments are a simple reflection of the person writing them. No more or less. You have a choice. You can react, hit back and stay in the pain for a bit longer by prolonging the conversation or you can simply…
Commenting about how you dress, speak or look?
Commenting about ‘who do you think you are?’
Commenting about your friends, family, spouse, partner?
All of the above have the power to hurt deeply, believe me, I know. But what I also know is that by reacting you are feeding into the negativity and that can only bring more into your own day (hello law of attraction). By commenting negatively, the only outcome they can be hoping for is for you to go lower and we don’t do that. There will be times you want to react and hit back with an equally cutting reply but remind yourself that in doing so you’re giving them what they want.
Show up, keep showing up and take up ALL of the space. Make a scene! You get one shot at this life stuff. If you have a gift, share it. Some people will love you and some won’t, that’s just human nature. You won’t be for everyone and nor should you be. Stay in your lane, be authentically and unapologetically you and your people will find you, love you and stay loyal to you.
You have to be brave, it’s the only way we can pave the way for the generations to come. If we go high then so will they. If you see negativity aimed at someone else then send them love and something positive, let them know they are not alone and remind them ‘Hateful, spiteful comments are a simple reflection of the person writing them. No more or less’.
On a final note, sometimes it’s hard to see the wood for the trees and, we can end up so poised to spot negativity and incoming shitstorms that we miss when we’re dealing with actual, real, valid feedback.
Suppose you can see that the person commenting has listened to, studied or looked at your work, they’re probably doing you a bit of a favour by giving you a view you might have missed and although it’s still tough to swallow it might be worth a second look. Remember though, you have to take it on board, this is your work, and you get to have the final say. Always.
I’ll leave you with another of my favourite quotes from the fantastic Brené Brown; “If you are not in the arena also getting your butt kicked, I’m not interested in nor open to your feedback’.
Tricia Scott is the Founder and Editor of The Female CEO - Create Evolve Overcome, a platform and digital magazine holding the space to showcase female entrepreneurs from all over the world. She works and collaborates with various organisations to bring the most inspirational journeys, stories and training to help entrepreneurs on their own personal success mission. The Female CEO is growing, expanding and gaining global recognition daily and Tricia is able to bring her own level of expertise as a coach, mentor and multi-company director to her very exclusive table along with her team of brilliant Guest Editors and Bloggers. You'll usually find her with her MacBook in one hand and a coffee or a glass of something fizzy in the other and she always have sunglasses in her hair. Reach out anytime!
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