Are You Wasting Your Time on Haters and Trolls?

My friends have been doing so well for themselves lately that they’ve started to receive some hate mail for their efforts.

You don’t get to Valhalla without a few chinks in your chainmail.

There’s simply no way you’ll please everybody all the time, and some people consider it their professional duty to shit on those they’re jealous of.

This is hard to deal with. It’s even worse when they make the attacks personal.

However, if you believe in the quality of your work and the impact you’re trying to make, these haters should be ignored.

Yet, this concentrated effort of indifference towards trolls is the hardest. You think you can persuade them to see your side.

You think, “if only they’d see my point of view.”

This is futile. Yet, ignoring the trolls must be done.

People who add no positive impact on the world deserve no power nor attention.

Of course, this is different than constructive criticism and feedback to help you improve.

When you begin playing the guitar, your strings attack your fingers and you bleed for the privilege of learning this new magical musical skill. But over time you develop callouses, muscle memory, and craft.

Similarly, pushing forward in the face of jealous ad hominem attacks develops thick skin.

Progress takes time. Making a positive impact on the world takes blood, sweat, and tears.

I’ve certainly had enough haters and trolls in my life, and not just the ones that guard the bridges of the highlands of Iceland.

I use them as fodder for marketing so that I can reach more of the people I can serve. Knowing that their hate has only brought me additional income and success is only icing on the cake.

I cackle at the thought that if they knew just how helpful their hatemail has been, they would be foaming at the mouth.

I’ve written blog posts about my favorite pieces of hate mail and all my 1-star reviews. Those posts sold a lot of books and got a lot of attention:

I briefly touch on haters in Success Strategy #2 in You Get What You Give:

“Do you want to chase down frustrations in the form of people who don’t value you, or do you want to find people who share your vision for making a difference with their work?

Success takes time and it’ll take a few years for people to see you as an overnight success. Make sure that you use that time wisely to create value that adds impact to your life and those who you want to serve.”

Prioritize the people who show up. The people who raise their hands and believe that you can help are the ones you should focus on. The people who tear you down, criticize you on the internet, or don’t care what you have to say don’t need your attention. Flip the power around and make your H8ERS your MOTIV8ERS instead. The trolls will always come out of the woodwork to criticize you. Just blow them a kiss and go on your way. They’ll go back under their bridge, and you’ll cross onto your next adventure.”

One of the reasons I wrote You Get What You Give was so that you could get some motivation to overcome these constant frustrations we deal with online.

I know how hard it is because I’ve been showing up to face the trolls every day for ten years.

Of course, it’s easy to write about and say that you should “do this” or “think that.” It’s another thing altogether to show up and lead by example but it’s my hope that my little book will help you do just that.



I write about music, creativity, and entrepreneurship. My new book, You Get What You Give, is out now. Grab it here:

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