Here’s the bottom line up front fellas:
When you start to pursue what you love, to become more than the boring ass corporate man the world had in mind–or just to stand out of the crowd–people you love will push back in ways you never experienced while you were floating through life.
I left my corporate job in October, flew to Brazil, and after weeks of conversation with a great friend, admitted out loud that my passion in life is meeting and connecting with people. I want to share that.
I came back, kicked this blog into gear, and declared myself a charisma coach.
The response from friends and family? Some super, amazingly supportive, some good, some neutral. But also some responses I’ve become more and more acquainted with as I’ve become more and more of an individual:
Eyerolls, scoffing, whispers through the grapevine that old friends “aren’t sure they approve” or “don’t know if they like Charlie less now.”
People will resist you following your unique path
This type of Haterade DID NOT EXIST when I worked my corporate job. It did not exist when I pussied out of speaking to girls. No one gave me shit for standing there with my drink at my chest, attempting to fall into oblivion. No one gave me shit for not striking out on my own, starting my own company, and living life to its fullest.
Back then everyone was cool. Being a “consultant” was respectable and not worth talking about. Today, my decisions are polarizing and I am constantly answering questions about what I plan to do.
It’s jarring. If you’re like me, you’ve only pleased your loved ones with good grades and scholarships and safe, sanctioned decisions to walk down well-trodden paths.
The moment you assert your individuality, you’ll find that people aren’t so supportive.
You must learn how to deal with haters as you grow
If you haven’t seen it already, trust me. It’s coming.
Some friends are going to give you crap. They are going to tell you can’t learn to interact with women. Then they will tell you it’s immoral.
Then they will tell you to stop focusing on girls and come hang out with them at the bar more. When you do, they will spend the first hour getting plastered, then wander off to hit on girls like drunken homing missiles.
You’re gonna feel the Haterade and you might make some lifestyle compromises to remain friends. So maybe you don’t practice learning while out with a certain group. Or maybe you don’t bring up the girls you are seeing when catching up with them.
Whatever. Fine. But no matter what, DO NOT quit and adopt their values. Stay strong and carve out time a few days every week for purposefully practicing your social skills (or whatever self-improvement you are practicing that is drawing their ire.) It’s hard, but you must learn how to deal with haters.
Because, surprise, surprise, Haterade is an inescapable symptom of standing for something.
The upside of Haterade: A brief interruption for an analogy
Before you assert yourself, you are a piece of dust. You float by, settling wherever, connecting indiscriminately, hardly being noticed nor bothering anyone. You are neither compelling nor offensive. No one hates you. You blend in.
When you start to assert yourself and stand out of the crowd you transform. You are no longer a piece of dust. You now have a pull that attracts some and repels others. You become a magnet.
All of a sudden people start reacting to what you stand for. Some people will be repulsed. They’ll try to tear you down and hate on you publicly. Others will do so privately. It doesn’t feel good.
But some people are magnets themselves. From across the world they will be drawn to you. Because you are declaring yourself to be what you are, you will find one another. You will connect like you have never connected before. People who share your values, who would have been introduced in passing at a party and then left your life forever, will wind up sticking around and becoming life-changing friends. Your relationships will become more intense and more rewarding.
And everyone–haters, fans, enemies, and friends alike–will have a line of sight into the true you. Because a magnet doesn’t turn off depending on the crowd.
Back to the Haterade . . .
Here’s the funny part:
My friends most violently disapproved of my new habits when I TALKED about them. Then a little LESS while I was learning them. And now NOT AT ALL that it has become integrated into my life. Why?
Because people just tend to resist change. Style, haircut, life passion, it doesn’t matter — if it’s new, they bite back. Once its been around though, it gets accepted
Tim Ferris said it best
“Most people are fast to stop you before you get started but hesitate to get in the way if you’re moving.”
One more quote for the road
All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.
That’s true of declarations of who you are as a human as well. Stick with it guys. And own it. The Haterade gets better 🙂
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