Everyone is a critic, as most people in creative industries know. It’s a part of the business and we all learn how to roll with it.
But sometimes naysayers can be a major distraction to even the most confident creative professional. They may tell you that your latest idea won’t work, they might quibble with your business model, or even take aim at your talent. Sometimes the criticism may be unintentionally brutal — but often those who attack or undermine you are purposefully aiming to throw you off your game.
But that negativity doesn’t have to get the best of you if you know how to handle the haters.
Remember your own vision – and trust it.
It’s easy to lose sight of your own creative vision – and that can make you a prime target for those who doubt your abilities.
Take time to reconnect with your own creative instincts.
Recall what drew you to your industry in the first place. Take some quiet time — away from cell phones, schedules, and other people — and focus on your own creative ideas. Recall the ideas that inspired you most, of the projects that brought you the most satisfaction and make a plan to build on them. Being focused and secure in your own vision is the best defense when naysayers come calling.
Differentiate haters from motivators.
Bad news is always hard to hear, but sometimes its necessary to listen. To differentiate those who are trying to help you from those who are trying to tear your down, consider both the source and the message.
Are the criticisms coming from those who are actual or potential clients, business partners or collaborators? If so, it may be worth considering — the opinions may be efforts to help you grow or prevent you from falling into an unforeseen pit hole.
Are you hearing similar critiques coming from several different sources? This may be an indication that your product or vision is missing its mark. Consider their observations.
If the naysayers offer only persistent nitpicking, denigrations, and insults — particularly if they have an interest in seeing you fail, tune them out — except to the extent they make you more determined to be successful. Let your haters be your motivators!