“Enough with the underwear pics… you’re a smart girl, you have more things to say, unfollowing.”
“Do you know that your eyebrows are way darker than your hair? You should change that.”
“How did YOU land such a good looking guy?”
“10 emails in 3 days? Go F** yourself. Way to f’in annoy potential clients. F’in idiot.”
“You’re way too aggressive, I’m out.”
You might think it’s all rainbows and butterflies over here in Jenna Kutcher land, and it’s true – we have the most supportive, loving and just all around amazing tribe. But. I’ve found where there is a success, ugly things can creep in and try to attack too. I love to say “More followers, more problems” and a lot of times, we’re fighting battles behind our screens that people never see. I want to dedicate this episode to the haters today and share how I handle criticism.
To prove I’m not invincible, I thought I’d read you some emails that have landed in my inbox. These were hard to find because my team does a good job protecting me from them, but here are a few we could dig up: (I’m thankful that we had to actually dig to find these because it’s a testament to the great people we have supporting us!!)
Mary M said…
What a bunch of garbage and I am not a mac and cheese eating millennial and I don’t try advertising by Instagram and I never contacted you. I hope you get a real job that you can be proud of one day..(actually..I don’t care if you do or not). You will not succeed because you sent me that presumptive email which demonstrates your lack of integrity and intelligence. Have a nice day Jenna..with your cats.”
Then I said…
Jenna here (with my dogs!) I’m sure you didn’t think I would respond, in fact, I normally don’t but sometimes people need to know there are actual humans behind screens. I do have a job I am super proud of, you know what I do? I serve up content and teach people, I document wedding days that turn images into heirlooms, and I most definitely treat people with kindness, grace and respect.
If you leave knowing one thing about me, let it be this: a little more kindness, a little less judgement. So today, Miss Mary McDonald, I’ll be praying for you. Because hurt people like to hurt people and while I got a great laugh out of your message, my heart told me that maybe you need a reminder that good people do exist…
I’m sure you thought you’d get a rise out of me but you probably didn’t know that’d be this sort of one… because we rise in lifting others.
Whoa. *Then* Mary Said…
You are a most gracious person and my apologies for my earlier. I was rude for no reason and beg your forgiveness. I am glad that you responded..let’s get started again. Nice to know that there are people like you! Mary xx”
Now that that fun is over, let’s talk about how to handle situations like this in your own business…
Put boundaries in place in my business
I consider my team to be my gate keepers. Even finding these messages to read you was difficult because they are dealt with and deleted so fast from my inbox by my team. I’m so grateful for them to protect my heart and energy.
Kill them with kindness
I’ll tell you 9/10 when I respond with kindness and let them know there is a real human reading the email they put out into the world, I’ll get an apology back.
Have a folder of fan mail for the hard days.
Caitlyn started a fan mail folder for me that I’ll click through on days I need encouragement from all of you. We have the best tribe on the planet and although I can’t personally respond to the hundreds of emails we get, but know that I read them – often on days I need it most, so thank you! Focusing on the good and deleting the negative has been really helpful with this.
Remember it’s a reflection of them and not of you.
The other thing I’ve noticed and try to keep in mind is that hurt people like to hurt people. Knowing these people are likely walking a tough road puts it into perspective and helps me move on from their cruelty more quickly.
If you’re pleasing everyone you’re probably pleasing no one – including yourself.
Here’s the thing, you are not going to be able to please everyone. These people that take the time to write you a mean message? They aren’t your people. Focus on the ones that are and the fact that everyone is not going to love you or your message is ok. It’s more than ok.
The more I do this, the more eyes I have on me, my life, my body, my business. Putting yourself out there open YOU up for criticism but I have to remind myself that when you’re doing the big, hard word, people will notice and sometimes it won’t be the RIGHT people but when you can sincerely learn to focus on the good, to keep your heart open, and to protect your energy to be poured into the right things, you’ll become more convicted in your message and you’ll be more prepared to fight for what you really believe in.
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