Haters Gonna Hate. $&*@ ‘Em.
A couple of days ago I made a rather small tweet – Haters gonna hate. $%#@ ‘em. I received an awful lot of retweets, and got a lot of comments. It seems my sentiment, as crude as it was, was shared by many.
A long time ago, I either read in a book or heard on a podcast Robert Kiyosaki tell the story of the Hawaiian Black Crab. These crabs are good eating, and it seems people walk around the beach with buckets collecting them for a meal. The crabs crawl around on the bottom of the pail, walking over each other, but not doing anything productive. Every once in a while one of the crabs will get an idea – “I’m getting out of here!”. It will start to climb out of the pail, get a claw over the top, and begin to pull itself to freedom. The other crabs, instead of helping the freedom seeker, will instead grab onto him and pull him back down into the pail. People, says Kiyosaki, are not that much different.
Years ago, before I ever heard of the Black Crab or Robert Kiyosaki, I left a job at the Co-op. It was my first real job – I’d worked there since I was 16 – and I’d climbed the ladder. If I recall correctly, I was making $12.65 per hour and had a pension and full benefits. This was in 1996. I quit to further my education.
I was ridiculed for it by a lot of people. See, in their eyes, I had it made. I was making killer money (!) and had a guaranteed pension. And I was trading it for what? A life in ‘the big city’?
Every time you try to do something, there will be people who don’t understand why you are doing what you are doing. They have their reasons, and maybe they think those reasons are good. But I will tell you that almost every time, those reasons can be boiled down to one thing: fear.
Fear of being left behind, fear of being made to feel like they aren’t good enough, fear of losing you if you move far, far away. Fear of change. Fear of the unknown.
The thing is, overcoming fear is really the basis of all human achievement. We need to push ourselves all the time to avoid becoming stagnant, miserable, and depressed. Run a marathon, try a new sport, climb a mountain, jump out of an airplane, ride a bike. Business is no different – carry a new line, hire a new salesperson, open a new branch, engage in social media. Fear. Don’t do it. People will laugh, you will fail.
It is a sad state of affairs that people would rather criticize, complain, and mock than achieve themselves. But nothing is done until someone gets up and says, “Let’s try this!” People complain about a lack of affordable housing, but no one builds any. This cycle is repeated over and over and over again. It is how we live.
Nobody is immune to this. Even the most successful people in the world have fears – barriers which they don’t dare cross. For some people, like Sir Richard Branson, those fears are a lot different than the guy who owns a bakery down the street. But the point isn’t to compare and say that one person’s fears aren’t valid – it is to challenge them to push at those fears.
Go do something that you’re afraid to do. Call me to teach you about social media, or to have a newsletter written, or to launch a direct mail campaign. Hire an ad agency to rebrand your company. Design a new product. Start a charity. Learn a musical instrument.
And when people start telling you that it will never work, tell them to leave you alone. You’re too busy making a difference in the world to care about what they think.