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Tuesday, June 6, 2017

A Message to My Troll(s) - The Importance of Ignoring the Naysayers

Today's post is a bit of an unscheduled message to the person(s) who have been consistently trolling my blog ever since I published my first post in July 2015. I decided that rather than continue to respond in comments I would write it as a post in order to illustrate what is arguably the most important life lesson of them all: Ignore the naysayers who tell you that you can't do what you set out to do.

The naysayers in my case are those people or that one person in Toronto, who continues to troll this blog and level various attacks against my intellect, my character and my integrity. So far:

  1. This person (s) started off attacking my idea, asking through pointed questions whether it was really wise for me to leave my profession to become a stamp dealer. They tried to insinuate that I was working for peanuts when they knew damn well that I was building a business and investing in an idea. Yet they persisted in attempting to employ false and invalid comparisons asking me what I was making now compared to the salary I made as an employee. I say that these are invalid comparisons because it is a universally accepted fact that you will take a pay cut when you start ANY business, no matter how good your idea is. For one thing, your employers have the benefit of infrastructure to implement ideas quickly - teams of other employees - bank credit lines etc. You don't have that when you start. You only have yourself and consequently you will work harder than ever before. But the difference is you own EVERYTHING you produce. No else gets to take credit for your ideas or your work ever again. It will take longer to gain traction, but once your idea begins to succeed, there is nobody around, nor any office politics to derail it.
  2. As the business grew and it became apparent that they were mistaken about it not being a viable business, they changed their tack and started attacking my financial prowess by asking me how I financed the house and pointing out the fact that I was using other people's money and insinuating that I wasn't really succeeding, or being financially responsible, since I wasn't using 100% my own money. They completely ignored my posts about how I was financing more than 80% of the business with my own money - a far higher amount of "skin in the game" than most entrepreneurs have when they start their businesses. 
  3. When that argument didn't fly, they begun attacking our move to New Brunswick, insinuating that we were isolated, had moved to some kind of hick-town and that our friendships would die because we only saw people once a year, even though they have no clue about how often we see our friends and family and that plenty of people live apart from each other. 
  4. Now, most recently, after opening our Bed and Breakfast, now that it is really apparent that we are onto something really good, they are attacking my parenting by suggesting that I am a bad parent because I live 4,000 km away from my ADULT SON and throwing out the concept of isolation for good measure. In addition, they have started attacking my integrity by asking me if I ever told my employers about the fact that I have Aspergers. I interpret this as "You only succeeded because you lied about who you were to your employers by not telling them about your Aspergers when they had a right to know." Why else would they ask me that? This question completely reveals their prejudice born out of ignorance. The reality is that I did tell my partners in my last firm about it even though it was none of their damn business. Why? Because we were discussing the future of an intern who we thought might be on the spectrum and I stood up for him by telling them that I was on it too. 
They have done all of this anonymously and without making direct statements, but rather by asking questions only - rudely I might add. They lack the basic courage to address me directly with their beliefs and to take responsibility for what they say by identifying themselves. So what we have here is a mixture of:
  • Ignorance
  • Cowardice
  • Nastiness
That, ladies and gentlemen pretty much sums up most of the naysayers in your life. They do not have your best interests at heart most of the time. It is very clear to me that the people or person making these comments are not happy with their life choices. They probably hate their lives and wish they could follow their goals and dreams. But they lack the courage to do so. So instead, they spend their lives doing nothing to change their situation and instead they tear other people down. They effectively take their character deficits (ignorance and cowardice) and transmogrify them into a virtue (responsibility) and use that as a club to strike out at those who dare to leave the pointless Rat Race behind them. 

If my posts don't convince you of how pointless the Rat Race is, then frankly nothing will. The thing to understand about the naysayers in your life is that they vastly outnumber the people who are positive - by 50:1, or even more. It is very easy to get distracted by the cacophony of their negativity, since it is so prevalent around you. But it is essential if you are going to succeed as an entrepreneur to surround yourself with positive people who believe in you and offer CONSTRUCTIVE comments and ignore those who don't. This doesn't mean that the positive people will always think that every idea you have is good - they may not agree with everything you do. But the difference is that they have a general belief in your ability to succeed as YOU DEFINE SUCCESS. They don't define it for you, and they don't attempt to hold you to someone else's definition of what success is. If you look at all the questions these trolls have posted on here, you will see that not one of them is the least bit constructive. They are not constructive because these people don't know the first thing about me, so they can't possibly know, for instance whether being far away from family is really a bad thing. For all they know, I could have come from an abusive family (I didn't) and this could be a good thing. As it is, it is a neutral thing, since my family is very geographically spread out. But my point is, they couldn't possibly know this, and therefore their question cannot possibly be constructive.

This brings me to my last point, which is that only those people who know you well can ever offer constructive comments of criticism of what you are doing. Everyone else who thinks they are being constructive are in reality just flapping their gums 99.9% of the time because they like to give unsolicited advice. My suggestion is to either politely accept what they say and make it clear through your actions that you are ignoring them, or politely tell them off. If you are not in a position to do that because the person in question is your boss or someone with power over you than you have to just remember not to get swept up in what they are saying.  


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Clearly you are enjoying life. You have found your hearts desires in so many ways. It reminds me of a line from the Beattle's song She's Leaving Home

    "Fun (fun is the one thing that money can't buy)
    Something inside, that was always denied, for so many years
    She's leaving home, bye, bye"

  3. Hi Dale. Thanks for your comment. I am not trying to suggest that people who stay in the Rat Race are in any way inferior to those who leave. I have the utmost respect for those who can accept wherever they are in life and make the most of it. But those people don't usually tear others down. Usually they just get on with living and keep their opinions to themselves unless they are asked.

    It's when it is clear that someone isn't happy with their situation but rather than do anything about it they choose to be negative to others that I lose patience.