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Top tips for handling negativity online

Top tips for handling negativity online

August 8, 2016 - By Sam Mann

Honest Mum shares some survival tips from the blogging frontline.

As my mama likes to remind me, 'you'll never please everyone' and the sooner you realise this, the better. Not everyone will 'get' you, nor you them, and some might outright dislike you (and when it comes to online life, often for no reason whatsoever) so it's important to get some perspective. Stop sweating the small stuff and focus on what matters.

Here are my top 5 tips:

1. Accept the internet for what it is

The internet is empoweringly democratic but it's also decentralised which means anyone can say whatever the heck they like, on it. People can hide behind their anonymity and tap away whatever drivel comes to mind. I've had randoms tell me my children look disgusting (nice) or one stand-out tweet, after the birth of my second son informed me I had an awful figure. Erm, thanks. 

However on the upside, I've had women tweet me I've changed their lives/careers/dreams and it's those I need to hang on to.

Accept online life what it is, at best, a supportive hub which also, like life, houses dingbats in the mix- and accept this is just something you cannot change. 

You are not in control of the world wide web but you are in control of your response, your reaction to others. It's time to manage your emotions, to not entertain anything unreasonable and keep strong. 

 2. Don't feed the trolls

Look, stick up for yourself by all the means (if anyone tried to hurt me, my friends or my family, I would undoubtedly, unflinchingly stand up for myself and them online), but you equally must choose your battles carefully. You mustn't allow negative energy to seep in and kill your vibe. There are many awesome people out there so always think positive and be open to new connections and friendships while in the same breath, stay wise. Trust your gut, it's there for a reason and know that there will always be vile and deluded people out there but they can't TOUCH you. Just keep truckin' and worry about those and what matters. 

I remember a girl on my first day of uni telling me I reminded her of the 'mean girls' at school so she'd immediately assumed I'd be like them.

3. Know yourself

When others condemn us, we often blame ourselves first. We question our work/online presence/ looks/attitude/ (insert a million other things) when facing negativity but it's crucial to remember that most people online don't *actually know you and there will always be envy, particularly in the competitive online world and those green monsters can really be monsters! 

Furthermore, people will always come to you with their own baggage.

 I remember a girl on my first day of uni telling me I reminded her of the 'mean girls' at school so she'd immediately assumed I'd be like them. She was surprised when I wasn't and was glad she had given our friendship a chance.

Ultimately know who you are, your strengths and importantly your flaws, so they can't be used against you and keep that moral compass of yours in the right direction. 

4. Surround yourself with real friends

My #womansquad and of course, loving family are my armour: my support network, my strength. I'm lucky that my strongest blueprint for friendship is my incredible mum, our bond lay down the foundation for all that came after. 

When you have people around you who love you unconditionally and want the best for you, anything is possible. 

5. Count your blessings

When negativity hits, the easy option is to wallow. You mustn't. Now is the time to write a gratitude list and count your blessings. Seek out all that is positive and remind yourself of all the happy-makers in your life. It's time to rewire your brain so positivity is your default and no one can knock your spirits.

I hope you've found this useful. Vicki's site Honest Mum features family-life, fashion, food, style and opinion posts on how to be a mother hustler!  

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