Skip to main content

Growing Up: Sometimes Negativity and Hate is a Blessing in Disguise

You know how most people say they miss their childhood? Well, I’d never go back but those experiences as a child are what shaped me into who I am today. I grew up as a misfit. I was the “weird” kid as many children would call me. Surprisingly, it’s not only just kids who treated me different, sometimes my own teachers would single me out or treat me as second rate. I was chubby, had messy hair, was a ball of excited energy, excelled in academics and at one point I even had the cliché braces and glasses all rolled into one. I was a huge target for people to make fun of and some individuals made it their mission to terrorize me.

I could have become introverted or turned into someone who moulded herself into what others would deem acceptable. Instead I conveyed confidence even in my most insecure moments. When snide remarks were made about me, I behaved as if those words didn’t even make me flinch. Even when I was scared while being bullied by others I stood as tall as I could (I was always one of the shortest kids) and spoke with firmness.

Growing up through those experiences and not fitting in anywhere taught me the beauty of having tough skin and not changing who you are to suit others. It taught me how to stand my ground even when people would intimidate me and it also taught me the beauty of appreciating everyone for who they are as a person and not for what they looked like on the outside. It gave me the courage I needed to be different and do things outside of the norm because I had already built the backbone to deal with any hostility that came my way. So what if people didn’t accept me? I was an outlier anyway, right?

If we are to live our lives concerned with what everyone says and thinks of us, we’ll never progress to be anything greater. It’s not easy to not be affected by what others say but it is a skill you have to hone if you ever want to accomplish things in your life. Now I’m not saying ignore constructive criticism because there is no way you can develop without it but there is a distinct difference between that and plain negativity and hate.

People will always have an opinion about you and everything you do. I wouldn’t even be surprised if someone was rolling their eyes while reading this but the difference here is that I’ve made the effort to put things into words and do stuff with my life, like blogging about fashion for example, while that same person who’s rolling their eyes probably hasn’t done much at all. The people who view you in a negative manner and try to berate you, many times, are the same people who wouldn’t take the risks and chances that you have.

When you try and break out of a mould that is different from the norm you make yourself an even bigger target for people. If you let that negative energy affect you, you’ll be paralyzed from moving on in your life. Don’t ever allow someone else to drown your ambitions or make you feel any less of a person. No one who has made something of themselves has ever been free from the negative opinions of others, not even the greatest politicians, inventors, artists, scientists, activists…etc.  

Very recently I had a really rough experience with someone who I barely knew that was spewing hatred towards me when I had only been nice to them. I don’t mean they were just being rude, I mean this person literally behaved like they wanted their soul to devour me and I had no clue why. I was so shocked but after I composed myself, I took in situation and it lit my spirit in such a positive way that I’m actually happy I went through that. The very next day I formulated these words to convey my thoughts:

“Unwarranted negativity and hate from others can do one of three things: it can defeat you, it can poison you and twist you into an angry and hateful individual, or it can fuel you to become even more successful in your life. Learning how to harness that kind of fire is one of the most amazing skills that can carry us through in life.

Remember, there is tremendous power in being able to brace yourself against the negativity of others but there is an even greater power when you’re able to use those same stones that were thrown at you to build the base upon which you stand and flourish.


xoxo,

Comments

  1. Erica,
    I really like your blog! You're making me want to get back on my writing. We barely keep in touch, but I just wanted to say so glad you're still doing this!
    -Melodie (from high school)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Melodie! Thank you so much for that, I love when people take the time to give me feedback. It's not easy to write out my thoughts or place pictures of my self out in public sometimes but it's a part of who I am. I'm so happy that my blog impacts others in such a positive way. It makes me want to keep going when I'm unsure of what I'm doing and what direction I wanna take.

      Delete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Why "Success" Doesn't Always Mean Happiness: Success Redefined

SUCCESS! What is the first thing that pops into your mind when you hear the word success? What makes a person successful? Is it money, status, power, fame, or is it something else? The reality is, that in our Western society, most people identify success as some mixture of money, status, power, and fame (and with women, beauty is generally a necessary component to add to all of that) but is that truly success?

When I was in college and university I remember mulling over the topic of success and that's when I came to a powerful realization for myself - personal success is not defined by money, status, power, beauty or fame at all. That's what the outside world tells us or demonstrates as success. It's what we see emblazoned in ads and in our media. It's what we pass down to each other and what we talk about in social media. All of these things are what we equate with success - and success equals happiness right?
Based on our notions of success shouldn't celebrities…

Men's Coats and Jackets - Part 1

I know that some guys are completely lost when it comes to fashion. Especially in North America, where it's not exactly something men focus on, or perhaps feel uncomfortable thinking about it. Although, times have changed and I've begun to see far more fashionable men these days than in the past. I get that some men here are still so resistant to a tighter fit (no I'm not talking about super skinny jeans) but I can't tell you how sexy and appealing it is to me when a man has the confidence to pull off clothing and hairstyles that have more of a European flare to it.

You know how they say some guys look at a girl and maybe undress her with their mind....I do the total opposite. Sometimes I look at at a random guy and envision them with a certain hair style and clothing I find would be stylish on them. It's just my thing, a weird obsession with men's fashion.

Anyway, the point of this post was to help guys out visually when it comes to winter jackets and coats. …

Post-Traumatic Growth: When Trauma Transforms Your Life

Trauma. It's a 6 letter word that carries so much power and complexity. The Oxford dictionary defines it as "a deeply distressing or disturbing experience." Trauma represents such a varying degree of experiences: rape, emotional abuse, assault, torture, a plane crash, war crimes, bullying, witnessing violence...really the list can go on. One of the hardest forms of trauma is that which is committed against you by others humans. Some people have had repeated traumatic experiences. Some people have had varying forms of trauma. Some have been exposed to trauma for a long period of time. Regardless, no one escapes from trauma without it impacting their lives and the way they socialize with the world.

When you go through a traumatic experience your entire world is flipped upside down. Emotions such as fear, shame, guilt, sadness, anger, sorrow, numbness, confusion and grief all occur -- sometimes being felt within the same time-period. You feel like you can't make sense o…

Self-Perception and the Destructive Impact of Social Media: Success Redefined (Part II)

In my last post I talked about how society's definition of success perpetuates unhappiness (click here to have a read). Rather than looking at success as a measure of our fulfillment and contentment, we measure it by wealth, power, fame and beauty. Unfortunately, social media has only heightened our awareness of these ideals. A medium that was once created simply for connectivity is now a massive marketing tool and a place where people share the best moments of their lives. 
Prior to social media, if you wanted to see someone's photos, hear their opinion or learn about them, you'd either see it/hear it directly from them or get wind of it through the grapevine (unless they were so famous that you'd see them in traditional media). You weren't continually bombarded with information about everyone's lives and although the measure of societal success was relatively the same, there was less of likelihood that you'd feel like you didn't measure up on a consta…

Well Dressed Women

Not much to say except I love the outfits all of these women are wearing, some are extravagant and others are simple. A few of the girls are well renowned for their fashion sense and if you follow my blog you'll spot one of my favourite style icons, Anna Dello Russo. Keep an eye out for future posts, two of these girls will be my next Woman of Style.













This will probably be my last post till I get into Egypt. I'll try and post as soon as I land with some photos.
xox,