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On Negativity and Criticism

Posted Jun 09 2011 7:30am

This is something that is bothering me like no other.

Over the past few days, I have been seeing a number of posts from bloggers – saying that they are overwhelmed by the negative criticism that is being received through comments on their blogs.

What ever happened to – “If you don’t have anything nice to say, then don’t say anything at all.”

That is how I feel.

I know that being open and honest in the blogging community opens you up to a world of criticism.

And I also feel like it is SO easy to SAY .. take each comment with a grain of salt; let it roll of your shoulders.. don’t let it bother you.

I’ve said that too. But like many other things in life – this is MUCH easier said then done.

Criticism – negativity – are the exact type of self talk that can bury us deep in a hole; a hole that feel captive – with no escape.

We recognize t – we blog about the negative effects of fat talk.. distorted body images.  We talk about how important it is to learn to love ourselves.. to accept ourselves.

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So, why is it … that in a community that so strongly believes in acceptance, support, and encouragement – there are individuals that find the need to openly criticize, judge, and evaluate others.

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Each blogger – though stories are unique – has fought some sort of battle.. has traveled on a journey – to get to where they are today.  I mean.. life is a journey, after all – isn’t it?  The stories that I read – the blogs that I follow on a daily basis (more and more every day) are nothing short of inspirational and motivational – in their own special way.  On the journeys – and in each batle – there are bumps in the road, times of defeat – remorse, sadness, struggle.

To me – it is these struggles – imperfections if you may – that MAKE the blog world what it is.  That makes each blogger who they are.  That bring together a community of people – to support one another in times of hardship – and to celebrate momentous occasions.

So why the need for negativity?  For the “Negative Nancy”s; “Judging Judy”s; “Critical Karen”s?

I feel that EVERYONE is vulnerable to the effects of explicit critiques – negative feedback.  Even the most confident person in the world will feel a little bit of a blow to their self-esteem if someone comments on not liking a hair-do .. or an outfit of a blogger (yes, I have seen comments noting this).

Even the person who is strong enough to overcome an ED, courageous enough to blog about it – and is working hard on their path to recovery – will feel a pierce in their heart when someone says – you exercise too much – you eat too little – there is not enough variety in your foods.

And yes – the person with a rightfully earned weight loss.. who has worked hard for months – even years – to keep that weight off.. will feel that burning sensation inside their stomach.. if – after a wooful weekend.. or a splurge weekend because.. (YOU DESERVE IT..) their is backlash in the comment section.

So – here is where I am confused. WHY do people feel it necessary to critque the lifestyles of others?  No – we are NOT always going to agree with what others post.

What should you do? In my opinion… move on to the next blog.. and read it – find something to celebrate.

Obviously – if there is serious concern for a true blogger friend.. then something needs to be done. But – there are mature and appropriate ways of expressing your concern.  In my opinion – this should not be done ON BLAST through public comments.

No one is made of stone. And we should not act like we are made of stone. Words can hurt. Words remain in our mind.. long after they are spoken.. long after they are typed.

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This community is FULL of supportive people. I know that those read my blog regularly .. are NOTHING but supportive. Sadly – this is not the case all over blog world.

I have been blessed to have great support since I have started this blog – only a few negative Nancy’s passing through.

To me.. beauty is found in IMPREFECTIONS.  I would not – in a million years.. wish to be perfect.

Every battle I have fought.. wrong decision I have made; tear that I have cried, and occasion that I have celebrated… has made me WHO I AM.

Mistakes – there have been many?  Regrets – very few. It is within the scars that remain from the hard times – combined with the life that is exploding from my soul – that I find my beauty – and my purpose.

If you don’t like my scars.. my mistakes.. if you think maybe I should be regretful – then that is your opinion and you are entitled to it.

But in MY humble opinion.. you should keep that to yourself.

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