Here is a screen shot of the typical comment I normally receive from some of my regular haters & trolls.
Given that I am most of the time, I write articles, post videos, share opinions and communicate my ideas & thoughts to almost 300,000 people, It is not uncommon for me to have haters, trolls and keyboard warriors who try their best to bully me.
Initially when I started my career online, it used to disturb me. really bother me and completely ruin my peace of mind. I am not joking when I say this — I even found it hard to sleep, concentrate on my work or even think of creative ideas — all because of these responses, rude comments & reactions.
At first I tried being polite to them.
Then I tried reasoning with them.
I tried winning them over with logic, understanding, empathy and even humility — but nothing worked. In fact, when I was nice to them — it backfired on me even more.
And then to make matters worse — when I responded to them in a reactive manner — the problem only quadrupled! I started attracting scores of bullies, trolls & haters!
This went on, until one fine day I decided to close down my Facebook, Ask FM, Twitter & youtube account. I am not joking! I seriously did this. I couldn’t handle the pressure, the stress, the hatred and the mental anguish that came from reading all these truly unforgiving opinions & comments.
I was upset.
I felt defeated.
I seriously took this issue to heart.
The problem was — I didn’t know how to handle this challenge.
And it was then I spoke to my Mentor & he shared with me something that rattled and changed my thinking forever.
When I spoke to my mentor and shared with him my concerns, wise as he was, listened to me, smiled…. and then said….
“Sheela, could you pass me a coin?”
I was like “huh?”
I looked back to see if he was talking to someone else and then confused — I looked at him again to make sure he was talking to me — which he was.
Once again, he repeated “Sheela, could you pass me a coin?”
I looked at him completely confused and then told him, “Who is Sheela?”
He pointed at me.
And then I responded by stating, “Why am I Sheela or whatever that is?”
He then very calmly replied, “From today, I’ll call you Sheela and I think that would suit you.”
To which I laughed finding it silly and told him, “Er, no, I think I would rather be Loy Machedo as it sounds more classy.”
Then he asked me, what about “Muhammed or Mark or Mohan? Would you like to change your name to any of these?
Getting slightly irritated, I told him, “I’m Loy Machedo, I love being Loy Machedo and I am happy being called Loy Machedo. Why should I change my name or respond to anyone calling me by another name?”
To which my mentor looked at me and said “Can you repeat that once again?”
I paused for a few seconds wondering what did he just say…. and only then I realized the point he was trying to make.
The fact is, neither you nor I can ever stop anyone from his opinion, his idea or his beliefs about us, the world, about god (or its lack there off) and anything else. And frankly speaking everyone has a right to their opinion. However, it is left up to me to decide, if I want to accept someone else’s opinion about any subject — including me or not.
So if someone calls me Sheela or Asshole or F**k Face or Mohammed or Handsome or Amazing or Loser — I have a choice to accept it or reject it. The power to validate their opinion, the power to choose and the freedom to empower or disempower another person’s opinion — lies in my hands. So why should I allow this to be given to them?
Ever since that day — I have made a sincere effort to keep this principle in mind.
Now mind you — I didn’t suddenly become mentally tough, emotionally strong and logically mature by that one session with my Mentor. It took me time, effort, awareness & practice.
Today, whenever I get anyone that hates me, calls me names or insults me — I have a tons of tricks up my sleeve to get back at them. And boy — is it fun! In fact, I look forward to the attacks, the profanity, the insults, the haters and the trolls.
There is so much more variety, creativity, stupidity, rudeness & comedy in the hate that people have for me. And yeah — it brings in some level of anticipation & fun in the process of reading what people have to say.
So the next time someone abuses you, makes fun of you, insults you or trolls you — remember what I said — YOU and ONLY YOU have the power to choose what to do with the insult. You can either accept it or reject it. You can choose to react to it or ignore it. You can choose to laugh at it or fret about it.
I for one choose to have some fun.
After all, I love seeing the reaction when call my online hater “Sheela” from time to time.
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