In life, there are three groups of people… And I must tell you that all three are relevant. The first group are those ones who play active roles to ensure that life is worth living. The second group are those who win awards and they usually emerge from this first group. The third group of people are those who just sit and watch. Now! If the 1st group are not there, the second will never be there even the third group. The first group makes the second and third group exist. But listen, if the third group is missing, then the activities of the first group will be meaningless. The third group shows that what the first group is doing is worth their time, money and energy. I am talking about the third group today. They are the spectators, they are usually the ones who applaud you, the critics, the judges and the analysts. They sit and watch, few of them applaud! most times, they are just looking for errors or ways to pull down the folks who belong to the first and the second groups. If you belong to the first and second group, you have employed the SPECTATOR ( first group) and they are the most hard-working type of employees. They are so devoted and they work free of charge and put in extra time into their jobs. Everyone in the first and second group have to be very mindful of the folks in this third group. They can make or destroy you. But most times, the biggest critic in your life usually lives between your ears and your mind. Its a lot easier to complain about the SPECTATORS but having the courage to move past your own vulnerability and uncertainty is usually the biggest obstacle you will encounter on the way to achieving your goals. When I started writing, it wasn’t just the hurtful comments from readers that prevented me from getting started. It was my own fears about what they would think about my writings. We have to face this internal fear and criticism that prevent us from getting started. It can take a lifetime to learn that just because people criticize you doesn’t mean they really care about your choice to do something different. Usually, the haters simply criticize and move on. And that means that you can safely ignore them and continue doing your thing. But that is easier said than done because we all like to be validated. Some people like it more than others, but everyone wants to be respected and appreciated to some extent. I personally do. I know that whenever I choose to share my work with the world, I wonder about what my friends will think, what my family will think, and how the people around me will see me because of that choice. Will this help my image and reputation? Should this be coming from a role model? Especially as regards writing, I usually had an internal struggle even though I know I am such a good writer, I felt the youths would see my writings as too serious or old fashioned as we live in a society that is gossip and entertainment crazy. But I believed in myself and I knew that I wanted to contribute something to the world around me and I encouraged my self with this saying “You can either be judged because you created something or ignored because you left your greatness inside of you.” At the end, I concluded that its much better to contribute something to the world than to die with your gift because you are scared of the SPECTATORS. Now, before I continue with the SPECTATORS and how to deal with them… Let me first tell you that no matter what you do in life, some people are going to criticize or judge you. If you don’t have them, it means you have not started living. For one reason or another, someone will find a reason to project their insecurity, their negativity, and their fears onto you and your life, and you will have to deal with it. So don’t be bewildered when you encounter such.
With this in your mind, let’s now talk about the SPECTATORS (critics and judges)… The voice of the critic is usually louder and clearer than the voice of the ones who applaud you. I am specific about the critics, analysts and judges because they are the ones we have issues with. Most of us hold on to negative criticisms and it has an adverse effect on us. We remember negative emotions more vividly too than positive emotions because somehow bad seems stronger than good. There are sure ways to get over criticisms when they come but let me share one of the criticisms I have received with you. A certain day, I wrote a post on my FACEBOOK wall, it was a message to us all to quit being greedy and promiscuous and be content with our husbands or partners. That if you are already married, and your spouse has financial problems, you two should complement each other. Someone dropped a comment saying! “Such advise should not be coming from a single girl, you are not qualified” I was shocked and sad! I mean, I thought to myself that every sane human will be happy reading such positive words… But no! Someone was out there to throw hateful words, “laughs out loud” All that hate for someone who writes about the society, the youths and our value system. What if I wrote about something controversial? THIS IS THE MESSAGE… No matter what you do, someone must find faults, some people are just born that way! *similes* How do you move above them, how do you ignore them??? Well, I advise you to: 1. Focus on where you are headed and not on people who serve as road blocks. Focus on the road and not the wall. The negative folks, the critics and judges (SPECTATORS) are the walls and you know what happens when you run into the wall, Injuries and pains! Don’t let the SPECTATORS distract you. Focus on the road, avoid the walls and road blocks… When someone dishes out a negative comment, use that as a signal to recommit to your work and to refocus on the road ahead of you. Some people are determined to take things personally and tear down the work of others. Your life is too short to worry about pleasing those people. 2. If you must respond to your critics and judges, respond graciously. Do not insult them back. Just be kind to them. 3. To deal with these analysts, critics and haters, be sure you are not one yourself. Don’t be the person who tears down someone else’s hard work. The world needs more people who contribute their gifts and share their work and ideas. Working up the courage to do that can be tough. Support the people who display that courage. 4. If you can ignore, that’s the best thing to do. Forget all those who are taunting and jeering… They are usually those who have nothing to offer. They occupy the cheapest seats. 5. Don’t ever stop what you are doing as long as you took the decision to do that and it makes you happy. No matter what business you do, you must have a critic, a judge or someone somewhere analyzing you. If you don’t, it means you have not started yet. Expect SPECTATORS to analyze, criticize and judge you. Only very few of them applaud especially at the stage when it seems like you are still struggling. Remain focused and passionate and shock them with success. BE ENLIGHTENED! BE INSPIRED!! BE MOTIVATED!!!