How I Deal With Hate As An Online Creator

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Last week’s post on my budget caused a heated debate online.

People were mad that I didn’t spend more, mad that they couldn’t spend as little, or mad that I even posted it. I got a lot of “must be nice” comments. Those are my fav. Turns out, people get mad about anything. 

I’d be lying if I said I brushed these comments off and moved on. Cause I didn’t.

I shared on Instagram about all the hate I was getting on my budget and how I was really surprised. I left IG and came back a few hours later to an insane number of messages in my DM’s. I was flooded with stories from other creators getting hate mail and threatening emails on a regular basis. 

This led me to create this post, but I want to be completely transparent.

I’m still working on dealing with hate mail. Some of it sucks, some of it makes me laugh, but this has also been an eye-opening experience.

Here are 5 things to do to deal with hate.

1. Focus on compassion.

Most people who write you hateful letters and comments are dealing with some deeply rooted stuff that is making them act this way.

Think about it this way – someone happy, positive, and grateful isn’t usually the type of person writing hate mail or writing negative comments all the time.

When I get hate mail, I focus on compassion first. I never wish bad on people who are trying to beat me down – that just puts me on their same level and stirs up even more negativity inside. 

If I respond, I respond positively. I don’t feed into their negativity. 

2. Focus on the good

I’ve never bullied someone online, and most of you probably haven’t, either. Most of us don’t like to beat others down for fun, but the mean comments are always louder than the nice ones.

For every mean comment I get, there are many good ones. When I get really nice thoughtful emails and comments, I like to screenshot them and put them in a separate folder.

I love to look back on these from time to time so I’m spending time focusing on how great this community is. 

3. Don’t feed into the conversation.

Most people will say mean things behind a computer, but they’d never say it to your face. People gain strength and courage when they’re behind a computer, why that is, I don’t know.

It’s most likely because they know they won’t face any consequences for their actions. 

Misery loves company.

4. Accept criticism.

There’s a big difference between hate and constructive criticism. I love getting real, helpful criticism from my readers and community.

For example, some of my readers have told me it’d be more helpful if I attached links to certain things, use font that is easier to read, etc. I love this.

My readers tell me what they’d like to see more of, what they’d like to see less of, etc. This is great.

But when someone tells you that you should kill yourself or they hope your dogs/babies die, that’s a whole different story. This isn’t constructive criticism. This is pure hate coming from a really sad person. 

5. Laugh it off.

The day after a bunch of people went off on me because I don’t spend more – I actually laughed a bit because it was so ludicrous.

Though I don’t read comments anymore (or at least try my best, sometimes people tag me in posts), I did see a few comments in my recent Forbes article on how I earned $80,000 while in my senior year of college.

For the most part, people didn’t believe it or said pervy stuff. It’s all good because I’m the one that made the money – and know that I did it. 

Online creators get hated on for the craziest things.

In fact, there are hundreds and hundreds of videos online of people laughing at hate comments. 

And if you’re reading this post because you’re getting hate on your blog or YouTube channel, I recommend watching this video. Because it has me rolling on the ground right now and it might give you a smile, too.

If you’re a hater:

This is for you, the person who spends their free time as a keyboard warrior. Online creators are real people who have feelings.  

But beyond knowing that, you may need professional help. There may be something rooted in childhood that happened and you use hate as a way of coping with things. 

Final note:

I’ve always wanted this blog and community to be a safe place for people to come to, but as things grow and expand, I realize that this means new people will read this blog, send me hate mail, and bully others in this community.

I’ve never been a keyboard warrior, never felt the need to send someone hate mail or bully someone online, but I do my best to see where these people are coming from and how to move on. 

If you have Netflix, I HIGHLY encourage watching Brene Brown: The Call To Courage. I was actually in tears from this. If you’re dealing with hate, this is a must-watch.

Last week, I realized I hold back from this blog. I only give 50% of me because I’m scared of offending one of you. You guys are getting the Alexis lite version.

I’m constantly walking on eggshells because I don’t want to piss anyone off. Then I realized…People get pissed off at anything. So what’s the point of trying so hard?

In other news, I’m excited to start being more vulnerable with all of you. I’ve really held back with even showing my face in video online or doing interviews, but I’m also done with being worried about the negative things people have to say.

Because there will always be a negative nancy around.

And this past month has really shown me that for the most part, this community is amazing. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again – I really feel like I’m developing genuine friendships with many of you online. I’d love to meet you guys in person one day. 

What to read next: How To Run A Business With An Introvert Personality

How do you deal with hate as an online creator?

This Post Has 9 Comments

  1. Hi Alexis,

    Saw your Forbes feature by my buddy Robert. Didn’t realize you were Michelle’s sister too. Very cool and small world!

    You’re absolutely right about why someone would give you nasty feedback. They are always protecting something bad in their lives.

    You make good points. But here is the reality unfortunately, the larger you get the more hateful comments you will receive.

    After 10 years of Financial Samurai, there’s pretty much not one day where I don’t get some racist, or man hating, or insulting comment. For the first several years, it got pretty annoying. Then It got kinda amusing for the next several years, like where is his people find the time. Then I figured out how to harness it to write more content over the recent several years.

    I generally give a recurring hater two warnings, One that is in my comment section before they click publish (I recommend you adding this extra sentence too). And then one a response. If they keep going, then everything is fair game since I own all the comments on my site.

    I’ve written some very popular and inspired work thanks to the hateful comments. And these posts have grown my traffic tremendously over time. So now I just see hateful comments as motivational fuel, and it’s really invigorating now.

    Good luck on the growth of your site! And congratulations.

    Sam

    1. Hi Sam! Yeah, I’m prepared as my business expands, this will attract more haters. The more it happens, though, the more I’m realizing that a lot of it is funny, but I also know not to entertain it. I used to respond to help people understand where I’m coming from, but realize that people don’t care, haha.

  2. Alexis, you should be really proud of what you are doing. You broke through all of it and your blog is growing leaps and bounds! You have created a growing community of people who genuinely care about what you have to say, including me!

    Haters are going to hate. They are bullies who get their kicks picking on nice people because they know they can get under our skin. But you have a secret weapon. You can see them for what they truly are and send them back to oblivion. Remove them from your life! You have a finger and a delete key. Use them.

    Just press delete, smile, and say “bye now” as you send them back to their hate filled world.

    They have no meaning in yours. They don’t belong here. It’s your blog and your life and your choice to keep it positive and filled with people who care about you. Just remember that. 🙂

  3. I think a lot of the time, hate like this stems from jealousy. And of course, there are those people that spew hatred just to get attention.

    I’m part of a Money Bootcamp course, and in the FB group, we celebrate when we get our first hater.

    There’s this quote that says, “Dear Haters, I have so much more for you to be mad at. Just be patient.”

    Having your first hater is a sign that you’ve made it. So congratulations. 🙂

    That being said, when people are rude and hateful, it can be hurtful. You see hugely successful people that are still affected by the things people say to them online. So I don’t know if it ever becomes easier to deal with. Just know that peoples negativity and hate has everything to do with them, and absolutely nothing to do with you. F the haters! Miserable people.

    1. I still remember my first haters, there were hundreds of women in Ravelry talking about my blog in a forum. That time made me laugh, but other times it really does hurt. I think it gets easier to manage because last week I was in reaction mode and wanting to change everyone’s mind, and now I realized that people can think what they want to think. It’s also mentally exhausting trying to get people to agree with you or see where you’re coming from.

  4. Thanks for opening up in this post. It’s good to see negativity from different angles. I agree, Compassion is the best way to deal with the haters. I’m amazed at how there are haters everywhere – Online, High School, Corporate America, everywhere! There’s no safe place anymore unless you completely unplug from people.

    I originally found your blog about two years ago when I started getting into online marketing. I found it through Michelle’s blog. I see your posts on Pinterest and Twitter mainly. This is one I’m pinning for sure. Thanks and keep them coming!

    1. Thank you so much for your kind words! 🙂

  5. Hi Alexis – It’s aweful that there is so much hate and negativity online. Thank you for sharing your story, this will help me and so many others. I too cried when watching Brene Brown. I have kept myself out of the arena in many situations because of fear of getting knocked down. And I have been knocked down many times. But I always grow when I get back up. Her call to courage message has enlightened me to activate my strength in new ways. Those of us in the arena are the victors, not the critics behind the keyboard. Congrats on your success. I enjoy your blog.

    1. What a great comment! Loved reading this. Thank you.

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