Daily Touch of Inspirations

September 17th: Dealing with haters

Ryan Holiday, The 366 Meditations on Wisdom, Perseverance, and the Art of Living

What if someone despises me? Let them see to it. But I will see to it that I won't be found doing or saying anything contemptible. What if someone hates me? Let them see to that. But I will see to it that I'm kind and good-natured to all, and prepared to show even the hater where they went wrong. Not in a critical way, or to show off my patience, but genuinely and usefully. — Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, 11.13

When someone has a strong opinion about something, it usually says more about them than whatever or whomever the opinion happens to be about. This is especially true when it comes to resentment and hatred of other people. (It is a sad irony that the prejudiced often harbor secret attractions to those they so publicly hate.)

For this reason, the Stoic does two things when encountering hatred or ill opinion in others. They ask: Is this opinion inside my control? If there is a chance for influence or change, they take it. But if there isn't they accept this person as they are (and never hate a hater). Our job is tough enough already. We don't have time to think about about what other people are thinking, even if it's about us.


The Daily Stoic: 366 Meditations on Wisdom Perseverance and Art of Living

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