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Rising Above The Negativity

by Courtney on August 26, 2011

Good morning and happy Friday, friends! How are we all doing this morning?

Rising Above the Negativity

So this morning, I sat down and planned on writing out a long outline for all of you from the panel that I spoke on with three fellow bloggers at the Healthy Living Summit this past weekend. I actually got about halfway through it, feeling pretty good about it, albeit a bit long-winded.

And then…I accidentally deleted it.

I don’t know what buttons I pushed on this darn keyboard of mine, but it was gone. POOF!

HLS Panel (600x401)

I thought about going back and starting from scratch, but then I realized…I’m already a bit late to the game with this recap, seeing as though everyone else from my panel is more on top of their stuff than I am and have written some phenomenal recaps.

So here’s what I’m going to do. First, if you haven’t already read them, you should definitely go check out all of their recaps:

Heather’s Recap <— Amazing and full of fun photo booth pics

Julie’s Recap <— A great overview on the tech side of how to delete comments, etc.

Brittany’s Recap <—Written probably most similarly to how I would have written mine

Second, I’m going to give you my super-quick rundown because honestly, I’m not sure that any recap I come up with at this point could top those three above. They’re pretty awesome.

So here’s the thing…yes, I’ve dealt with negativity. I would say that 99% of the negativity that I’ve dealt with has been in the comments section of my blog, which is not uncommon, but not the only place it can happen.

How I’ve dealt with that negativity has varied from case to case. For example, one of the things that we did on our presentation was provide a couple examples of negative blog comments and asked the audience how they would respond…would they respond, ignore, or delete?

Comment #1: “You’re an ugly b*tch” – What would you do?

Comment #2: “Girl! Have you ever taken an English class in your life? PLEASE learn how to spell and put a comma in the right freakin’ place!” – What would you do?

While the audience varied in their responses, I think that it was extremely interesting to see just how differently we all think and react personally to things. I mean, if you keep that in mind and really think about it, how often is a “negative comment” not really a negative comment, but more so just someone constructive?

There are really so many different scenarios that I could get into. One of the first negative comments that I received almost a year ago was somebody attacking pictures of my family. It was extremely hurtful and completely unnecessary, so I deleted it immediately. That comment was by no means constructive and really just made me want to throw cookies at their face.

Panel-2 (600x400)

Not my cookies though…I wouldn’t waste those on anyone like that.

Panel-4 (600x400)

But I have had comments where I think that someone really is trying to be constructive but either a) they aren’t totally portraying their viewpoint clearly, or b) they’re still being snarky, which totally overrides me looking at whatever they were really trying say.

What we all need to remember is that constructive criticism is not an excuse for meanness. If somebody really has something that they want to say constructively, then he/she should really figure out how to say it in a way that is not harsh, mean, rude, or snarky.

‘Nuff said.

I will say, that being on this panel was such an incredibly eye opening experience for me. Heather, Julie, Brittany, and I had many long discussions about our own personal experiences and how we were going to present everything in a way that would connect with our audience and fellow readers.

Some Words of Advice…

Unfortunately, I’ll bet that each and every one of you reading this right now has dealt with negativity in some form, whether you have a blog or not. But what we all need to remember is that at the end of the day, you need to be who you are.

The right people will be there to support you no matter what.

And now I will share with you all the same thing that we closed our panel discussion with…


In the worlds of my boy Pauly D., “You Do You!”

Questions for the Morning:

How do you deal with negativity (in the blog world or the real world)?

If you have a blog, have you ever received a negative comment? How did you respond?

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{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Heather August 26, 2011 at 8:58 am

You did AMAZING on the panel, my dear! I am so proud to have sat up there and shared with you. :) :) :)
Heather recently posted..Rising Above Negativity


2 Courtney August 26, 2011 at 9:00 am

YOU did an amazing job! Thanks, Heather!
Let’s do it again?? :)


3 Aine @ Something to Chew Over August 26, 2011 at 9:00 am

I haven’t had to deal with this yet – thankfully!

But if I do in the future, I feel so much better prepared. What a great panel :)
Aine @ Something to Chew Over recently posted..Breakfast Oatcakes


4 Blog is the New Black August 26, 2011 at 9:04 am

Great post, lady! ;)


5 Julie @ PBFingers August 26, 2011 at 9:04 am

LOVE your recap, Courtney. I loved our panel and think we should have weekly conference calls again. I’m going through withdrawls!
Julie @ PBFingers recently posted..Cereal Issues


6 Brittany August 27, 2011 at 5:54 pm

I totally agree! :)
Brittany recently posted..Lovin’ Local – Two Richmond Restaurants I Recommend


7 Jordan @ food, sweat, and beers August 26, 2011 at 9:06 am

Courtney, you did splendidly and, with the help of your fellow Pee Pees, made me feel like if any punk tried to get negative with me on MY blog (or Castle, as Heather referred to it), I’d lay the smack down (or the “delete comment” button) real hard. And, like my idol (not quite… but nearly) Pauly D, continue to do me.

Thanks for sharing, thanks for continuing to write despite any negativity, and thanks for not wasting your cookies on any haters.
Jordan @ food, sweat, and beers recently posted..Healthy Living Summit: Saturday Sessions


8 Kelly August 26, 2011 at 9:06 am

It blows my mind that someone would actually post a comment directly attacking your family. That is incredible to me. I always tell myself that haters are gonna hate and I just need to be me. One of my favorite new mantras (after reading the book, The Happiness Project) is to “Be Kelly.”
Kelly recently friday


9 Ashley@My Food 'N' FitnessDiaries August 26, 2011 at 9:11 am

Great post! I was looking forward to hearing your story on it. I usually deal with negativity (within my blog or outside of it) by venting to my husband, eating a bowl of ice cream, and then getting over it. :) You’re so right, at the end of the day, the most important thing is to just “be you”.
Ashley@My Food ‘N’ FitnessDiaries recently posted..“Business After Hours” Cocktail Party


10 Jodi August 26, 2011 at 9:24 am

I cannot believe someone would send negative comments about your family? Some people have waaay too much time on their hands. I have only received 1 negative comment about my blog (it’s pretty new), and it was face-to-face. Ouch. I was considering not sharing so much of my life anymore, but I can’t let that person get the best of me. It’s very important to stay positive about yourself! Great post; I wish I could’ve heard the whole thing.
Jodi recently posted..Welcome to FeedBurner


11 Samantha @ Running and Cupcakes August 26, 2011 at 9:27 am

My blog is pretty new, so I haven’t had to deal with negativity on it (yet, I’m sure). I’m not sure how I’d handle it. It depends on the situation, like you said, if it’s a direct attack the comment would be deleted. If I can read into the person’s comment and find constructive criticism, I suppose I’d try to respond to it in the best way possible.

In real life, I deal with negativity daily. I’m not sure why, but many of the people I work with are miserable. Sometimes I find myself getting down too – but I try like hell to turn it around fast. I do not respond to their negative comments because I don’t want to be sucked in by it. Negativity is an awful thing. I try to kill them with kindness, or just ignore the situation. Everyone has bad stuff in their life, but it can almost always be worse, you have to take the bad with the good, focus on the good, and not let negativity and miserableness take over.
Samantha @ Running and Cupcakes recently posted..My Love/Hate Relationship with Marathon Training (Day 23)


12 Hope August 26, 2011 at 9:27 am

This a great post! I was waiting to read a recap of your session. It seemed very informative! :)
Hope recently posted..A Dinner Bargain!…


13 Renee August 26, 2011 at 9:33 am

I don’t understand why people in the interwebs feel the need to be snarky. I enjoy your blog and read it daily. The best thing that can happen in a community is when other readers come to your rescue ( which I have seen in your comment section) good for you! Keep up the great work!


14 Gretchen @ Honey, I Shrunk the Gretchen! August 26, 2011 at 9:35 am

I’m fortunate not to have received any negative comments on my blog YET, but it feels like I’m just waiting for the other shoe to drop because I know it will happen at SOME point. I just worry because I’m already a really sensitive person (to a fault) and react very defensively, so that combined with the fact that the kinds of stuff that I think are most likely to get mean comments is so personal (err, progress pictures of me at my highest weight in a bikini much?! AHHHHH!) is probably a recipe for disaster. I liked the point made in the panel about having someone else read your response if you choose to react to it. Ughhh… the suspense!
Gretchen @ Honey, I Shrunk the Gretchen! recently posted..Why I Love Blogging


15 Khushboo August 26, 2011 at 9:35 am

“The right people will be there to support you no matter what. “–> AMEN! Fortunately I’ve only experienced positive feedback about my blog so I can’t really comment. I can however say that if I had constructive criticism/an issue to take up with a fellow blogger, I don’t think the comments section is the way to go about it. I would personally email the blogger as I think that as a reader, that’s just a level of decency. There are some negative comments which I have reader over on other blogs and I just thought to myself like “huhh…how did you even manage to pick on that”…some things are just too petty!

Great recap!
Khushboo recently posted..Brown paper bag: week 2


16 Val August 26, 2011 at 9:51 am

great post today! really enjoyed reading it! And you are right about the right people being there to support you. I recently had a tough situation where some friendships ended up being lost and while its really hard to deal with those negative comments and opinions, its really best not to waste your time on those people and focus on the people that are there for you through the whole process!
Thanks for such an inspiring post today. Its always nice to have a little reminder to be thankful for the people that accept you with all your flaws haha.
Val recently posted..Chocolate for Breakfast!!!


17 Liz @ Tip Top Shape August 26, 2011 at 9:51 am

I usually just ignore it. It’s very hard for me not to respond because it’s my gut reaction. Leaving it alone is usually best, though.
Liz @ Tip Top Shape recently posted..Lemon Lentil Soup


18 Emmarie @ Bananas And Beer August 26, 2011 at 9:54 am

I haven’t really gotten any negative comments on my blog, but I’m still pretty new to it. Luckily you’ve given some great advice to how to handle it when it comes my way.

Also, I totally feel you with the deletion. Didn’t it make you wanna punch the screen? :)
Emmarie @ Bananas And Beer recently posted..Ruby Lose-day


19 Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance August 26, 2011 at 9:57 am

Wish I could’ve been there to see you speak!

I’ve only been blogging for a few months and have already received my fair share of negative comments. I admit, at first I was discouraged– but I learned that those are the kinds of people just trying to bring me down. It really is not worth it!
Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance recently posted..Chocolate Baggage


20 Lyndsie @ August 26, 2011 at 10:08 am

This is a great topic and I wish I could have hear you present!

My blog is still a newbie so I haven’t had many negative comments but I have had plenty in the real world. It’s tough to handle. When I was little I would cry my eyes out and take it way too seriously. Now, I still cry sometimes but I realize that MOST of the time it’s not worth getting upset over.
Lyndsie @ recently posted..This Thing Called Balance


21 Julie H. of Spinach and Sprinkles August 26, 2011 at 10:17 am

I just wanna throw cookies at their face too if they say mean things….. I mean to take the time to type it out, don’t they have better things to do….. Way to rise above and come out shining!! :)
Julie H. of Spinach and Sprinkles recently posted..First day of 3rd Grade!


22 Ruthie Hart August 26, 2011 at 10:22 am

thank you for this courtney!
Ruthie Hart recently posted..What keeps me going


23 Yolie @ Practising Wellness August 26, 2011 at 10:28 am

This is a really helpful post, Courtney, and one about something that is so important…thank you for sharing your thoughts and experiences! I wish I could have been at the conference to see you guys’ talk in person, it sounded great! :-) xyx
Yolie @ Practising Wellness recently posted..girly girl


24 Sarah @ Simply Dove August 26, 2011 at 10:56 am

Luckily I haven’t received any negative comments on my blog (yet). But I’m sure I will one day. I think it depends on what the comment says that determines how you should deal with it. If it was something out of line and directly offensive (on purpose) I think I would just delete it.

Honestly though, I don’t know why people take time out of their day just to be mean to someone else. If they don’t like how you blog, then they don’t have to read it. But I guess we all have to deal with people like that sometime right? (Unfortunately!)
Sarah @ Simply Dove recently posted..One Good Reason to Start Running


25 Mallory @ It's Only Life August 26, 2011 at 11:09 am

It’s really easy to emotionally react to negativity (we’re human aren’t we?). But I am always way better off if I ask myself “why might she have said that?” People always have their reasons for saying negative things, and 99% of the time it’s about issues of their own rather than something about us. If I keep that in mind taking the high road is a lot easier to do.
Mallory @ It’s Only Life recently posted..Nutella Banana Walnut Oatmeal Bowl


26 Lizzie August 26, 2011 at 12:32 pm

Negativity in the real world–all the time! I shrug my shoulders tho, because I kind of stopped caring what others thought of me if it wasn’t anything positive. In the blog world–not yet.
Lizzie recently posted..How I feel about Highschool+lunch date!


27 Claire @ Live and Love to Eat August 26, 2011 at 12:37 pm

I think real world negativity would have a greater affect on me – I can shrug of negativity in the online-realm.
Claire @ Live and Love to Eat recently posted..Substitutions and Asking for Advice


28 Lindsey @ Cardio Pizza August 26, 2011 at 12:48 pm

I actually have not had a negative comment on my blog, but have read my fare share of them on others’ blogs and it’s just so unnecessary and mean. I think you guys have given such GREAT tips and I appreciate you bringing the issue up in the blog world!


29 Alexa @ Simple Eats August 26, 2011 at 1:04 pm

I haven’t received any negative comments as of yet, but I’m sure that will change! The thing that’s great about the blog world is everyone backs each other up!
Alexa @ Simple Eats recently posted..Chris’ Corner Numero Dos


30 kristen August 26, 2011 at 2:10 pm

I havent received a negative comment (just a few to make me think “did they just say that”) mostly I just ignore it. But I cant believe that people would attack others families, blogging styles, clothes, etc. I mean. I dont have time for that haha
kristen recently posted..See How You Can Personalize Your Blog with Custom Fonts and CSS


31 colleen @ thegiftofmondays August 26, 2011 at 6:43 pm

my blog has only been up since april, so i’m fairly new and thankfully no negativity yet on there. BUT. i did write a blog post one day because someone in my real everyday life was not so nice to me. while i wanted to tell them a thing or two, (which included some swear words that i rarely use) i refrained (at least out loud, because i’m pretty sure i was swearing in my mind!) and wrote this kind of silly post instead. and funny enough, it helped.

there will always be not so nice people in this world. and while i wish it weren’t so, it helps to know there are a bunch of us out here who are nice. and will pick us up if we’re down.

happy friday!!!
colleen @ thegiftofmondays recently posted..enjoy today…it’s the only one you’ve got


32 Liz August 26, 2011 at 9:45 pm

I loved your panel! Winning extra cookies didn’t hurt ;) I’m amazed at what you girls put up with on your blogs — and you handle it with class.
Liz recently posted..Peanut Butter Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies


33 e @thisnotedlife August 29, 2011 at 11:36 am

This is a great post – the conference sounds so interesting- how did you get involved in that? Is it something people get invited to or do you sign up to go? I know it’s a yearly thing just thinking ahead for next year :)

As for negative comments – all of my comments have to be approved before they’re “live” So if they’re nasty i just don’t approve them. I’ve yet to really be offended because honestly how hurt can you get by someone who isn’t even willing to sign their name? (at least all of my mean ones have been anonymous!)


34 Courtney August 29, 2011 at 1:45 pm

Anybody can go! :)
You should definitely check it out for next year if you’re interested!


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