Please read this. It’s not just for and about female empowerment. It’s for those of us who take social justice work dearly and seriously.
Crossing paths with snarky, ignorance-laden, bigoted commentary, online and off, this late in the 2000s, still bothers me a great deal. Don’t get me wrong. I like a good, irreverent laugh as much as anyone. And I struggle daily with my own internal biases, blind spots, and prejudices. I think we all should take stock and do personal inventory at least once a week. But I still hear things that makes me want to say, “do you understand the words that are coming out of your mouth?” When that happens, the world becomes a smidge bleaker and colder.
I sometimes feel overcome by the hate. It saps me of my strength and will. Like, what’s the point? And the point is, I do what I do because it brings me to life. I keep doing what I do because I want to get better at what I do. Haters will hate no matter what. So let them. Take heart. You are not alone.
“That doesn’t mean I consider all of my critics to be haters. If I get negative feedback from people who are close to me, strangers who actually care about my work, or experts in the field, I listen. Those people push me to work harder, too. But nothing motivates me like haters. The hierarchy just helps me to compartmentalize them. It’s not that I stop caring altogether, it’s that I care much less about the least consequential among them.”