My job is keep this place safe for you, the reader.
Not just any old reader, but the reader.
You’re the person I’m writing for, and anyone else who’s open-minded or politefully curious.
But all the other readers — the skeptics, the technically-flamers, the incoherent arguers — I’m not writing for them.
They’re not here to work with their anger constructively, take care of their Inner Child, or practice greater mindfulness.
So I don’t cater to them.
But I do juice their comments — for your benefit.
Because I’m big on emotional resilience. Which includes transmuting adversary into high-calorie growth fuel.
So when I approve an unhappy comment, I make sure to work it so that you at least can learn from it.
Ah, many things.
And that’s just the beginning.
And that’s just what I love about blogging.
How it’s only beginning.
The richness of blogspace
Blogs are fertile soil for the future of social interaction.
Instead of just inhabiting the same virtual space for conversation, we can data mine virtual conversations to really get inside other people’s heads.
To understand them, and ourselves, in much greater detail. To bridge perspectives, and make positive lasting change in the world.
The infancy of blogspace
Of course, right now blogging is in its infancy.
Bloggers are just learning how to interact with readers, many of whom are anonymous. And some of them are just learning how to merge blogging with business — so they can keep doing what they love for a living.
This means netiquette is slowly shaping.
Bloggers are figuring out how exactly to treat their readers and commenters. Which include the people who are their fans… and their haters. Yes, those ones who show up with a comment to ruffle some feathers. Or to draw some attention. Or to simply pass the time.
Some bloggers flame back against nasty comments, have strict comment policies, delete comments, shut off all comments, or do nothing.
And some try to find a middle ground by defending themselves through argument or snide remarks. Which usually backfires.
Because as long as you’re belaboring how unqualified your anonymous commenter’s opinion is because he/she/it likes to be called “kitty427pinkize”… you distract your fan base from what’s really important: cultivating a constructive conversation on your blogspace.
A well-kept blogspace
The comment section of a blog requires the most upkeep.
Which means it’s one place where a blogger’s true colors show.
It’s where they either “walk the talk” of their articles, or impair their integrity in some way.
A well-kept blogspace is hosted by a blogger with integrity made of steel.
Meaning they’re so damn connected to their message (the theme and purpose of their blog) that every negative comment is shaped as a tool for sharing that message.
By inspiring the blogger to refine it, clarify on certain points, better understand and address the adversarial position, develop thicker skin (which means greater self-confidence), or have the courage to say the message even louder.
The host of a well-kept blogspace needs to:
- Recognize destructive deflection, and employ constructive deflection where appropriate. What’s the difference? Read here.
- Sniff out skeptics from the genuinely curious, and understand what makes them tick.
- Trace the emotional trigger words and phrases in negative comments, so as to better comprehend them. So as to better arm their true audience for resilience.
- Consider all criticism, which requires a foundation of confidence, and then sort the snubs from the genuine challenges.
- Not just walk — but live – their talk (or online publications).
- Be in touch with their own emotions, especially the ones that get triggered by whiners. So they can always respond with a handful of zen.
- Work with all of those triggered emotions, especially the ones that will indirectly lead to a clearer understanding and appreciation for the message.
- Keep personal venting off the blogspace, unless prefaced in a respectful way.
- Respond to negative commenters with the intent of re-directing the discussion back to the really important topics.
How I keep this blogspace
All of those objectives are my focus when responding to negative comments here.
The “talk” of Mindful Construct is response ability.
So to walk it, I need to use negative comments as stepping stones to greater growth and awareness.
Consider this blogspace as a training ground. It’s a microcosm of what you face in the world everyday.
How negative-comment juice is nutritious
There are people in your life that try to deflect your thoughts and opinions, invalidate your feelings, make you feel inferior, pressure you into arguments, or take advantage of you in some other way.
(These people are usually at war with themselves, and not very functional in how they lead their lives.)
These dysfunctional and often codependent patterns of communicating and relating directly lead to dysfunctional societies and a royally messed up world.
So all the negative comments here are actually to your benefit because by digesting them at the comfort of your own computer, you can understand how they are dysfunctional and how there are many ways to respond.
This then translates to how you recognize and respond to the “negative commenters” in your own life. Who could be your boss, mother, brother, girlfriend, husband, daughter, or neighbor.
Why I appreciate negative comments
Believe it or not, but negative comments here give me inspiration.
They remind me of why I’m even writing here at all.
I write here because people think they can get away with invalidating others as well as their own true feelings.
Well, no one can get way with it. We all pay the price in the end.
And I’m here to say, try as they might, they won’t take advantage of you when you are emotionally resilient and healthy.
When your life is a mindful construct, you’re a pretty tough cookie.
And you’re armed to do great things in this world. To be the change of this world.
How I juice negative blog comments
In the future, I’ll be writing in-depth about cases on this blog where I juiced a negative comment for the constructive good.
It will give you a chance to look deeper, deconstruct argument tactics, trace emotions back to logic, and of course, become more resilient.
Get your feed to receive notification when new articles in the series are published. They’ll also be linked to in the section below.
And let me know if there are any other online discussions you’d like to see deconstructed.
Mindful Construct is a modest blogspace; there’s tons of fodder out there on the interwebs…
Mindful Construct case studies