Times have changed.

No longer is it that you need to be ‘famous’ to have trolls and haters. Apparently all you need is a significant following on social media, and be a musician and certain people out there seemingly lose their minds and get infuriated at someone being on the path to hopefully becoming more successful.

Don’t get me wrong. I think social media and the internet is an amazing tool for musicians. Never before has it been so easy to potentially connect, communicate with, and even potentially collaborate with ‘famous’ musicians just by sending a 140 character tweet over the internet. Social media has made the world smaller. We’re all connected by a simple click of a button. But… with every positive, there’s a negative.

With social media giving the power to anyone to have a voice – anonymously – opens the door to people whom I affectionately refer to as ‘jealous cunts’.

These people whom would rather focus on what I do, what I say, what I tweet, what I do with my music, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week rather than focusing on bettering their own life and taking themselves on their own path to success. No Sir! These people would rather wallow in their own jealous misery and try to tear me down because ‘they don’t like me’.

I mean, we’ve all been there. You’re minding your own business one evening, then all of a sudden a notification pops up on your phone and you see either an email, tweet reply, facebook message, from someone you don’t know. Your first reaction is always positive, thinking it’s a positive reply from someone, something complimentary, but no… you read the first sentence and your heart rate spikes, you feel your face flush, your blood pressure skyrockets and you begin to shake a bit.

Someone at this moment has decided to spew some slanderous, rage infused, unintelligent drivel about you on the internet in an attempt to get ‘a reaction’. What reaction, you may ask? Any reaction. Angry. Sad. It doesn’t matter, they just want ‘a reaction’. At this point you might reach out to family and friends to get some support, you might reach out to your fans, you might reach out to comrades in the same industry.

However, in MOST cases, the reality is, no matter what you say or do – that hate will only stay with you if you let it bother you.

When I first saw a bunch of hateful tripe about me posted on some websites online, my first reaction was to reach out to a musician friend of mine that’s way more popular than I’ll ever be to ask his advice on how he handles ‘hate’ from people. His response was simple, to the point, blunt, and true: “The more successful you get in life, the louder haters have to be in order to be heard. So you must be doing something right…”

This one sentence sticks with me to this day, because in that one moment – hate was turned into something positive. Hateful comments were not seen as fact by anyone, those comments weren’t used to judge me or see me any differently as a person, those comments were seen as “If you’ve got haters, that means you’re doing something right” which if anything is a compliment rather than hurtful.

Let’s be honest, it doesn’t matter if you have 10 friends or a million, 100 twitter followers or 5 million… it’s only a matter of time before ANYONE decides to spout something shitty about you because no one is immune from hate from a random stranger that has nothing better to do with their life. It’s tough for those that don’t have a thick skin, I get it. Especially if you’re insecure about yourself.

But you need to remember that this kind of hate only works and has an effect if you let it. The best thing to do is to realize it’s total bullshit, ignore it, laugh how people are jealous of you and do your own thing. For every single hater you’ll acquire in life, you’ll acquire 100 people in your life that aren’t. Haters are the minority and are a dying breed since it’s become more socially unacceptable to attack people for no reason.

Given I’ve walked this hater minefield countless times, my advice to anyone of you that currently are dealing with this is simple…

Don’t let them have power over you, Don’t let some jackass that doesn’t know you, what you’ve been through, the life you’ve lived, impact how you feel about yourself or what you’re doing with your life. Easier said than done, I know – believe me I know… but once you learn how to do this, your life becomes 100% easier.

Haters are easy to understand. After all you need to remember that there’s yet to be a single hater out there that is actually a happy, successful human being in their own right. Trolls/Haters/etc. are always someone that’s unhappy with themselves, their life, or they’re jealous. Period. So take solace in knowing that you’re living your life properly and in a way that’s making people jealous enough of you that they hate you. Take it as a compliment.

Remember to value yourself no matter what. There is nothing anyone can do or say to take away your accomplishments or the goals you’re about to achieve. No matter what you do, someone is going to hate you or judge you, it’s a fact of life. So you might as well stand up and be proud of who you are and what you do that makes you – uniquely you.