“We’re constantly getting these messages to mind our own business and look the other way if we want to be well-liked, to not tell the truth or speak our mind or say anything too intense. Well, I’m telling you here that this approach not only makes you party to other people’s crimes against themselves but is a prescription for mediocrity and delusion.”
- Kelly Cutrone, Fashion Publicist
This week, we’re on to Bitch Tip #4: Ignore the negative.
There’s not a person on earth who goes through life without receiving some sort of feedback, both good and bad. That being said, we all have to learn how to separate constructive feedback from negative or abusive criticism. There is a big difference between a heartfelt piece of advice designed to help someone improve and a nasty comment designed to bring someone down. And more likely than not, we’re all going to experience both during our lives. No matter what your dreams are, it seems that there are always multitudes of people waiting in the wings to tell you just how impossible those dreams are, how unrealistic your expectations are, and just how stupid you are for even considering such attempts. Know what bitches say to those people? Go. To. Hell.
So many women out there get a bad rep for ignoring people the naysayers, for doing things their way and making their own rules. When I think of someone like Anna Wintour, for instance, who is, by all accounts, considered to be elitist, sexist, demading, pushy, cold, evil, and a thousand other lovely things, what strikes me most is how focused people are her personality, and how little credit they give her for her accomplishments. She might very well be a mean person, but you can’t deny that she is the most important voice in the fashion industry. I wonder sometimes, whether she would get as much flack as she does if she were a man. I also wonder how all of this public hatred makes her feel. (She is, after all human.) And I admire her public management of those feelings, her utter lack of acknowledgement of this negative attention, and her refusal to change herself to conform to someone else’s idea of who she should be. She does not comment about herself or her personal issues with others (in fact, I couldn’t even find a meaty quote from her for this post), but instead, lets her success speak for itself.
When I find myself coming up against a particularly annoying wave of negativity, I try to remind myself of what and who really matters to me. My family and my friends love me regardless of what anyone thinks, and their opinions are the opinions that really count. The rest of it is just noise.
I’m sure most of you are familiar with the cinematic masterpiece that is Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion. And if you’re anything like me, you felt a flush of pride when those zany ladies one-upped their high school nemesis at the end of the movie. I leave you with a piece of advice from Romy herself. The next time you come across someone who decides to put you down, look them straight in the eye and repeat this mantra in your head:
“I don't care if you like [me], 'cause [I] don't like you. You're a bad person with an ugly heart, and [I] don't give a flying f*ck what you think.”
Then smile politely, thank them for their opinion, and never think about it again.
Now I want to hear what you think. Leave your comments below!