Dealing With Haters
As instructors there will come a time where someone says something about your class, your teaching, heck, even take a jab at you on the Internet! I know, it’s disappointing.
The life of an instructor and dancer can be a full-contact sport – as elbows, hooks and bloody noses are par for the course. This “sport” takes many forms. In fact, here’s one of the first Amazon reviews I ever received for my SharQui DVDs…
“I think Oreet needs to either stick to other workout forms or improve her bellydance technique before doing this in public. I find it annoying that she talks too much and with agitation. I’ve seen several disks which offer you an option to mute the instructor and hear just the music; I couldn’t find such a feature on this one. I’ve also seen other instructors that speak so charmingly that I don’t mind hearing them over the music (they talk sparingly, too). I can’t use this program because I don’t want to pick up bad habits from the instructor and I can’t tolerate excessive loud talking and counting.”
and here’s another (chuckle)…
“The hands are “Sloppy” and the arms are dead weight. Shoulders are not kept away from the ears correctly. I just think you are better off buying a technique dvd with a dancer of professional performance status and drill the sequences.”
Ah, welcome to the f-d up world called the Internet, Oreet. Want a tissue?
Well that was a while ago and over the last decade, I’ve cried, lost sleep, developed more insecurities and also had some positive realizations. Well, here are 3 truth smacks that help me keep my sanity (and reputation intact).
Truth smack #1:
It doesn’t matter how many people don’t love you. What matters are how many people do. This is why there are so many other classes and instructors on the schedule as well as DVDs for people to choose from. Look, you only need to find and thrill your diehard fans. These fans become your strongest marketing force, and the rest takes care of itself.
Truth smack #2:
Have self-control and ignore it, dammit! Otherwise you give your haters oxygen, power and possibly extra Google juice.
Truth smack #3:
If you respond, don’t over-apologize. I know there are times to apologize when you truly screw up, but more often than not, acknowledgment is all that’s required. Try responding like this …
“Thanks for the feedback. I’m always trying to improve. In the meantime, I hope you find what you’re looking for.”
You’ll always come out ahead when you come across confident, professional and thick-skinned.
So, the take away here is – anticipate that there will be haters and don’t react. As succeeding is always the best revenge!
Instruct & Inspire,