Any entrepreneur will tell you that running a business is no walk in the park. In fact, at times it can be more akin to a long, strenuous uphill jog on a scorching hot summer’s day!
So the more support and encouragement we can get along the way, the better.
Unfortunately, recently I have come across a few solopreneurs who have been experiencing a lack of moral support, criticism or even outright resentment at their attempts of ‘going it alone’.
Perhaps I am just noticing it more because I am a member of many online business groups where such frustrations are often vented.
Even so, it would appear that generally the more successful you become (or as people perceive you to become), the more critics you will attract.
If you are experiencing what seems like unfair criticism or feel that perhaps not everyone has your best interests at heart, here are some things to remember to spur you on:
1 Use criticism to your advantage
People will throw all sorts of criticisms at you as you go through life, not just in business, so don’t fear it.
Constructive criticism can be a good thing, even if it can be a little hard to take at times.
In fact, a good dose of constructive criticism should be sought after so you can look to constantly improve.
So, before you dismiss any criticism, even if it is from someone who you know doesn’t have your best interests at heart, see if there is any value in what is being said.
Use it as a positive.
They may have just unwittingly helped you without knowing it.
Believe it or not criticism can be a sign that you are moving forward.
After all, if you are not doing anything then there is nothing to criticise is there?
2 Is it you or is it them?
Sometimes people see your success or path in life as a personal reflection on them.
It could highlight something in their own life that maybe they wanted to do but never did. So instead of encouraging you, they take every opportunity to bring you down.
Alternatively some critics may want to boast about something they have done, or they might simply be envious.
Or it could just be that you are a direct competitor.
Take a step back and take an objective look at those who are criticising you before you accept what is being said as valid.
The real motive behind their words or actions may become clearer.
3 Haters gonna hate
Yep, I am afraid so!
I saw a meme on Facebook recently which said that even if you could walk on water, the haters would say it’s because you can’t swim. Unfortunately, as we go through life we can all attract people who just don’t like us, sometimes for no valid reason whatsoever.
That’s fine, and perfectly natural, we are not all alike.
But sometimes this can take a nasty turn and you can be left with a hater. There isn’t anything you can do about this; haters hate.
Nothing you can do or say will change their mind.
Accept it and move on.
4 Don’t take it personally
Of course not everyone has a thick skin and can shrug these things off easily, but in business you absolutely must.
Not just for the sake of your own well-being, but for the health of your business.
Don’t respond angrily to attacks or lash out, no matter how hurtful they may be.
Instead focus on why you started your business in the first place, the likelihood is that you are passionate about what you do and are fulfilling a lifelong dream.
Are you really going to let someone else’s negative criticisms have any bearing on that?
Adopt the successful entrepreneurs mindset, and forge ahead.
5 Think of the bigger picture
Use those rocks and bricks that have been thrown at you to stand tall upon, to build something really great.
One day you will look back and realise that those petty criticisms, or people who deliberately showed you no support whatsoever are irrelevant.
Success will be your resounding answer to your critics.
Because YOU will have built something all on your own, something special, unique and far more rewarding than any criticism anyone could ever throw at you.