I spent the past 24 hours cringing every time my iPhone chirped or chimed.
It was alerting me that somebody had commented on my latest article.
I knew that the subject matter was going to be controversial amongst the yoga community, but I find I’m never fully prepared for harsh criticism.
There were plenty of positive comments, many pleasant, “To each his own,” comments, but the majority were a slew of, “You don’t know what you’re talking about,” comments.
Though it wasn’t unexpected, it is new territory for me, as a journalist. Over the past seven months, I’ve written 32 pieces for elephant journal and with each article I am learning so much more about myself and how I relate to others. I am just as easily triggered as some of my readers and often left wondering if my voice is of benefit.
Each time I begin to write an article, I ask myself, “What am I trying to offer here? Why is it important that I share this?”
And each time I send something off to be published, I know that if I’m feeling a mixture of excitement and anxiety, I’ve written something worthwhile. It’s the times when I feel totally calm and at peace with what I have written that the feedback and measurable impact is minimal.
I know that I don’t always need to be controversial to reach the masses. And when I am controversial, I won’t always be well-received. But as long as my facts are straight and I am 100% speaking my truth from my soul’s understanding, how can it be wrong to share? If I positively connect with just one other being or inspire someone to think, haven’t I done my job?
Navigating the most tactful and effective ways to share information will likely be an ongoing lesson for as long as I continue to write for an audience. And it’s a lesson that I’m grateful to learn because with each new criticism I’m only getting closer to the person and writer that I want to be.
As my current mentor says, “Haters gonna hate.” And as Ms. Swift would say, “I’m just gonna shake it off.”
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Author: Megan Ridge Morris
Editor: Renée Picard
Photo: Library Archives at Flickr