How to Deal With Criticism as an Introvert Blogger

“While you’re busy telling yourself that you’re not enough - you’re not smart enough, or you don’t know enough about business - over and over and over again, you’re really just two millimeters away from starting down the path that’s going to get you exactly where you need to be.” - Cathy Heller

The biggest challenge that introverts have when starting a blog is not technical or creative.

It’s belief. We spend so much time overthinking and worrying that we’re not good enough or that we’ll fail and look silly that we talk ourselves out of our dreams.

There comes a point where you are on the edge. You’re sitting there in front of your computer, paralyzed by fear. You’ve written a blog post that you hope is epic, but you know it’s really just mediocre. You want to post it but you’re terrified that someone will actually read it and call you out on your lack of knowledge and expertise. You don’t want to expose the fact that you feel like a fraud.

It’s happened to me so many times. I’ve pushed the button to publish my blog post and waited with the knot in my stomach to see what would be said. Most of the time the comments are amazing and supportive.

But every once in a while… they’re less than that.

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I hope I figure myself out soon too. It’s been a long process and I’m tired.

It’s so easy to take those words straight to heart.

You let self-doubt take over once again. Retreat. Go back to the comfort and control of being anonymous once again. You start thinking that maybe this isn’t for you after all, that all those people who’ve made it must be different than you are.

The best way to stop this process is to ask yourself, “Is this really true?”

This thing that was said about me or this belief that I have about myself - is it REALLY 100% true all the time?

When I think about the comment above that someone left of a post of mine on Instagram, I have to ask myself do I really believe that I suck? Am I really all about image and money?

I won’t lie. Sometimes I do suck. I make things that are mediocre, or perhaps below that. Sometimes I don’t put in as much effort as I should. But not all the time. And that’s the key.

I do suck, but not all the time. So that comment is not 100% true all the time.

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The next question is, “How does believing this comment make me feel?”

Well, it makes me feel terrible. I already struggle with not feeling like I know what I’m doing. I already know that some of the work that I do is not great and this is just proof of that. It makes me want to stop and hide. It makes me question why I am here and why I am doing this whole thing. Why do I want to help people in the first place if they just treat me like that??

Ok… that’s a lot. Do you spiral like this too? Or is it just me?

The next question is, “How would I feel if I didn’t believe this comment?”

I would feel a lot better. I wouldn’t be worried about if I personally suck or if my work sucks. I would be more focused on helping people and getting better every day.

It’s a difficult thing to realize that you are responsible for the way that you feel.

It’s so easy to blame others for what they said. But it’s a lot harder to take the actions to not let their words affect you.

“While you’re busy telling yourself that you’re not enough - you’re not smart enough, or you don’t know enough about business - over and over and over again, you’re really just two millimeters away from starting down the path that’s going to get you exactly where you need to be.

“Those two millimeters are bridged with failure and practice.” - Cathy Heller

It’s incredibly hard to make something that’s messy and imperfect.

It takes just about everything you have. The fear of criticism will keep you paralyzed if you let it. But it’s just that - fear. You have to decide if you want to work through it or let it hold you back.

About the Author

Sarah Kuhn is the founder of INFJ Woman and The Quiet Ones podcast. When she’s not serving her clients, writing or recording podcasts, she geeks out on reading books, listening to podcasts about business and New Kids on the Block. She calls Boston, MA home.