A Response To A Hater And Some Hate Mail

Hater

Yesterday I received a piece of hate mail.

Actually, I’m probably being a bit too harsh; I wouldn’t actually class it as hate mail so much as more a kind of strong criticism mail. Either way, I’ve decided to respond to it here.

This isn’t the first time I’ve received mail of this kind.

I’ve had plenty before, and to an equal degree complimentary messages too, but the reason I decided to respond in this way is because although the person gave me their name, they didn’t leave a return email address; the name may also not be real.

Now why have I chosen to respond? Am I offended by the remarks? Nope. Was I upset? Nope. Did I go have a cry in a corner? Nope.

The Truth be told, I would generally not pay that much attention to, let alone respond to any messages of this nature, but this one especially caught my attention.

There were tones in the message that were reminiscent of the way I used to think and it actually inspired me to write about the journey of my shift in thinking.

So, here is the message I got sent through my contact form:

“Dude,

Those fees are a rip-off! Passing on knowledge and wisdom is something that should be done for free or a minimal charge at best but your obviously trying to make a quick buck.

Who is really going to take a “life coach” who also provides “comedy” seriously (and that too quite immature having looked at some of the clips).

Sort yourself out mate – find out what really makes you tick – coaching / comedy and take that track – don’t try and be all things to all people but dig deep and search for who you are.

As for those fees, the people who really need coaching and help may not even be able to pay you ร‚ยฃ10 as hour – are you passionate about helping those who may really need your help?”

To begin with, I tend to feel the same way about hate mail as I do when someone pays me a compliment. It makes me smile, but I try not to let it go to my head. ๐Ÿ˜‰

I try and think about the higher purpose I’m serving by doing all that I do.

I’m going to examine what was said and give my reasons for my decisions accordingly.

Believe me when I say that I’m not doing this to appease the haters. I’m doing this to illustrate my reasons for doing what I do because I believe them to be right for me.

Lets start with the first part:

“Those fees are a rip-off! Passing on knowledge and wisdom is something that should be done for free or a minimal charge at best but your obviously trying to make a quick buck.”

I agree and I pass on my knowledge and wisdom for free. I’ll let the 5000 hours or so or hard grafting that I’ve put in over the last 5 years on this blog speak for itself.

Almost every article is here to provide people with knowledge and wisdom and thanks to the beauty of the internet they are all for free.

I’ve been an unpaid radio presenter for well over 3 years, I’ve worked with disabled children voluntarily for over 5 years and I’ve been giving talks and working with kids in schools for over six years.

Did I mention that my e-book is also free?

So that eliminates the ‘quick’ and the ‘buck’ is a separate matter altogether so we’ll come to that later. I rarely do things for the short term…unless it is making love to a woman in which case, yes, I am pretty quick. ๐Ÿ˜†

Wow, look at that cool segue to bring me nicely onto the comment about my immature comedy and the fact no one will take my coaching seriously.

“Who is really going to take a “life coach” who also provides “comedy” seriously (and that too quite immature having looked at some of the clips).”

Your honour, I refer you to exhibit A, an article I wrote in September 2009 called ‘Spirituality & Dirty Jokes – Are They Mutually exclusive?’

I don’t know why some people have this image in their mind that all coaches need to be these anally retentive types with no personality?

I used to be one such person, I used to be a “coach” everywhere I went but then I realised that I didn’t need to try and be a coach to every person I met. I didn’t need to be ‘Mr Perfect’ all the time. I am totally fallible.

I happen to be a huge fan of very immature jokes and I also happy to like inappropriate humour…in fact, my favourite show is Family Guy.

If you’ve ever seen it then you’ll know that they make fun of absolutely everyone and everything and in distasteful ways!

I’m not going to apologise for my sense of humour or taste. I tried to hide my playful side in the past but all that did was make me depressed.

I’m totally comfortable with who I am. I’m a spiritual guy who likes smutty jokes. If you don’t like that about me, fine, but don’t judge my jokes as immature. God invented humour and I got that from his side of the family. ๐Ÿ˜›

Onto the next point…

“Sort yourself out mate – find out what really makes you tick – coaching / comedy and take that track – don’t try and be all things to all people but dig deep and search for who you are.”

Dude, you should so be a Life Coach! Thank you for the coaching session but just to clarify: Coaching is in my blood, I am an amazing coach, I’ve had some amazing results with people.

Comedy is something I absolutely love doing! I love doing comedy and it’s given me invaluable skills as a coach as I mentioned in this article I wrote about here.

It’s made me an accomplished public speaker in an accelerated way. I tried the Toastmaster route but as far as I was concerned it was too slow. I took up comedy to be a better speaker. What I found was a new passion.

I’m not planning to ever give up coaching/comedy/radio/writing etc ever! I love them all too much.

No matter how big I get as a radio presenter/comedian/tv personality etc, I will always give coaching to people who ask for it from me. (Limited only by my time and energy.)

“As for those fees, the people who really need coaching and help may not even be able to pay you ยฃ10 as hour – are you passionate about helping those who may really need your help?”

I’m passionate about educating people and empowering people. If someone only offers me ร‚ยฃ10 an hour to coach them because they are poor, yet they place value in that coaching and will still pay me as recognition of that value, then yes, I’ll coach them.

I can’t and will not coach individual people for free unless it is very exceptional circumstances. I’ve actually given a friend of mine around 20 hours of free coaching recently but only because they are a very close friend.

If you still have hang-ups about money I strongly suggest you read a book called How To Make One Hell of A Profit And Still Get To Heaven written by John Demartini.

All of my experiences collectively, my experiences of working in the corporate sector, working as a radio presenter, being a successful comedian, being an outstanding blogger :-P, being a great speaker and coach; if I feel those skills are worth ร‚ยฃ150 an hour to people then that is what I will charge.

If you know of anyone who has as diverse a portfolio as me and charges less, let me know, maybe I’ll think about adjusting to the market rate. As far as I’m concerned though, right now, ร‚ยฃ150 an hour of my time is value for money.

When my skills and knowledge level reach a higher level and I’m comfortable charging ร‚ยฃ500 an hour know and believing that I’m bringing ร‚ยฃ500 worth of value over that hour then that is exactly what I will charge.

So, whoever you are Mr A.P. who sent that message to me, firstly, thank you for taking the time to message me. Secondly I consider having a hater in the same vein as having a stalker so I’m actually quite flattered.

I appreciate all feedback. I’ve been called a terrible comedian before but all that did was make me try again and learn to be better.

I feel no animosity towards you, I’m grateful, because every experience has shaped me into the amazing person that I am; including your message.

55 Responses

  1. Gordie says:

    I like your attitude in dealing with negative feedback, Amit.

    Some people unfortunately expect life coaches to be anal retentive, and many are. But then you look at Tony Robbins, he’s full of charisma and humorous, whether you like him or not.

    So, hang in there and do your thing your way.

    Have a great 2011!

    • Amit Sodha says:

      Hey Gordie,

      Thanks for your kind words and I know exactly what you mean about Tony Robbins. The first time I went to one of his seminars I never expected him to swear so much as he does have a very clean cut image. But he was bouncing of the walls and you could see he was just being himself.

      Thanks again and very happy 2011 to you!

  2. Sandra Lee says:

    Amit,

    You are awesome. I admire your confidence and positive attitude. Bravo!

  3. Hey Amit. I totally agree with all that you’ve said here. I think non bloggers don’t realise how much time and effort goes into a blog.

    On the life coaching side my view is that ร‚ยฃ150 an hour is a bargain. If I needed someone to help me uncover a part of my life that would change me forever and it was only going to cost ร‚ยฃ150 in person, or even better ร‚ยฃ75 per hour over the phone, I would jump at it, especially from a comedian ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Amit Sodha says:

      Hey Steven. Thanks for your wishes. It’s as having a blog is almost like having a full time job in itself. My blog may not be the prettiest, or the most popular but I’m still proud of how much time and effort I’ve put into writing the articles and even creating a design that was slightly unique. It all took a lot of effort.

      Thank you so much for all your input and everything you’ve done for me this year too! Here’s wishing you an amazing 2011 and I hope you hit some new milestones too! ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Christopher says:

    Amit,

    Its amazing how that you are able to say something humorous spin on “anything”. That’s a plus for you.

    Great people are like Holy Books : Hated by many but ALSO LOVED by many. That’s just the way it is.

    By the way, i have missed you! See you!!

    • Amit Sodha says:

      Christopher, I’ve missed you too! Hope that whatever you choose as the next steps for your life they’re as amazing as some of the things I saw you write….whatever happens, don’t give that up and I’d only be too happy if you decided to guest post for me! ๐Ÿ™‚

      I wish you a very prosperous new year and many successes! ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Amit,
    I think you’ve dealt with the criticism in a very rational and mature way. I agree with Steve – non-bloggers have no idea how much time and effort it takes to establish a successful blog. When you take the 5000 hours you’ve put into your blog then the 10 pounds your charging per hour probably becomes more likes .001 pounds per hour!

    • Amit Sodha says:

      Aww thank you Angela. I does indeed take a huge effort. It’s like anything isn’t it…if you don’t put in the time and effort it’s not going to go very far. I don’t want to just be a one hit wonder of blogging. I expect to be doing this for many years to come!

      Happy new year Angela!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. My dearest Amit, Pat on thy back for such a beautifully positive response to a not-so-positive mail.
    And this is what i was talking about a few months back when, you left your job to pursue something more….I told you to embrace your uniqueness…and you being a comedian who coaches is that ultimate unique quality. Who better to life coach a person whoi needs clarity and direction than a person who can literally see the and live the brighter side of life. You are mr. bright according to me….
    You will soar my dear…just as you are now…there will be lovers and haters on the way…we cant please everyone. Just knowing that you being available to those who need you and your services is a blessing to many who TRULY need it. The passer bys can well…just pass by ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Lots of love to you,
    Z~

    • Amit Sodha says:

      Hey Zee, “there will be lovers and haters on the wayรขโ‚ฌยฆwe cant please everyone.” how true! You are truly a fountain of wisdom and I am totally blessed to have you in my world as well as the others here. Thank you for all your words and wishes of support in 2010 Zee. I wish you equally the same for 2011 as well as hubby and kids! ๐Ÿ™‚ x

  7. Kavita says:

    You are an amazing soul, but I know you don’t do all this to get praise! People want to hate, then they can just carry on, thier words mean nothing to you or the lives that you have touched!

    To you, MR or Mrs Hater who wrote the email to Amit – How about you talk to the individuals who have been helped by Amits unique persepective on life as a life coach, who has the amazing ability to also be in comedy! And through his own life, is able to offer a view of the world which in essence makes you laugh at the stupid things you would normally find too serious to deal with.

    I hope you find the path you are looking for, and I thank you for your comments, without which, this blog would not be written. So Hater, you too have your purpose.

    Blessings to you Hater and to you too Amit

    ๐Ÿ™‚ Kavi xxx

    • Amit Sodha says:

      Thank you Kavi. You know first hand what I’ve been through and that the words I give I don’t give lightly. Thank so much for your message! Here’s wishing you the most amazing year ahead ever!! Big hugz and kisses! ๐Ÿ˜€

  8. Mahavir says:

    Hey Man, I like your response. Turning all the negatives into something positive! Sometimes that can be hard to do but you make it look so easy/natural! And yes embrace that nawty humour of yours. I think i need to do the same, embrace who I am!

    Tell Mr A.P. whoever he/she may be to go have a pussywiggler and chill!!! : )

    For those of you who dont know what a pussywiggler is – it is a very very nice tasting cocktail drink! Nothing dodgy. haha.

    Keep smiling and making others smile Bro!

    Peace

    • Amit Sodha says:

      Dude, So good to have you comment on the blog!

      LOL @ pussywiggler! Oh those were the days! I feel like bringing in the new year with one of those! What are your plans? Whatever you decide…thank you for the sweet words and hope we get to hang out more in 2011 ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Very good attitude you have towards emails of this kind. I to try to turn negatives into positives and this post just gives me more inspiration to do just that in the future.

  10. Amit,

    I think are taking it right way and as you said this is good not to take it personally but sometimes it is hard to do when our own emotions are involved. I wish you joy and success in 2011. Happy new year.

    Preeti

    • Amit Sodha says:

      Hey Preeti, happy new year! Thank you for your kind words…it’s easy to get emotional over these things…but the good news is, the more it happens, the less you react over time. ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. Milan Bakrania says:

    Bro, your attitude to this negativity is phenomenal. Instead of taking the tit-for-tat road which many choose you have decided to resolve the issue without falling into the trap of criticising the criticiser! Brilliant. That’s probably one of the many reasons why this blog is so popular (and also the fact that it’s free!). Keep it up.
    Milan

  12. Lisa H. says:

    Hi Amit,
    This was really timely for me. Last week I received a fiery comment about an article I wrote as a guest post. One reader took it in completely the wrong way and made several personal attacks. It was obvious that I hit a nerve with her. Like you, this made me smile–mostly at the fact that I did not think that way. So I responded to the points in her comment, and did not address the personal attacks. In essence, I chose to rise above the fray. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Amit Sodha says:

      All I can say is Lisa, you’ve made it! To hit a nerve and hold your ground is all important. It’s only going to happen more and consider it practise for the future as it may be the first but certainly won’t be the last! Can I see the article and comment in question?

  13. Amit, this is genius! I love getting those emails too… though there is always a sadness that comes with them, as it is invariably clear that the writer/critic is really talking to themselves. I bet your critic spends a lot of take battering themselves over the head (metaphorically) and saying “you must choose one thing! You must focus!”

    It kills them to see you or anyone else doing things differently. I feel sorry for them being in that place ๐Ÿ™

    But… if you lower your fees I will personally come over and whack you with a large stuffed animal until you retract. There are a LOT of reasons why you should keep them as is or higher, and finding someone ‘comparable’ who charges less should never have impact on that! (rant over :).

    I’m sure you find the same: I’ve been noticing when people pay a real amount for a process, they are much more dedicated to it and to themselves for that period. For example I’ve paid ร‚ยฃ90 for a seminar and got a bit out of it, then I upped it to pay ร‚ยฃ1000 for that person’s weekend and I got a HELL of a lot more! Was the ร‚ยฃ1000 content better? Honestly, not really. Did I pay more attention and was I driven to actually go and make those changes? You bet! Were those changes worth ร‚ยฃ1000 to me? Yes, several times over… but I didn’t make them when I was only paying ร‚ยฃ90. Funny that.

    Anyway, nice hate mail, keep ’em coming!

    Mx

    • Amit Sodha says:

      I’m so glad I’ve got you to keep on the straight and narrow when it comes to those fees, I definitely don’t wanna get pistol whipped with a furry bunny!

      I felt exactly the same way when I spent more on seminars although in my case, when I went to see John Demartini, in my opinion, it was worth every single penny of that ร‚ยฃ750 for the weekend and his seminar was unlike anything I’d ever been too (and I’ve been to loads!)

      Bring on the haters!

  14. Haters are jealous and insecure of how well you’re doing so in order to make them feel good, they tend to criticize your work…. But I love how you bounce back like Kung Fu Panda and keep going ๐Ÿ˜›

    So keep up the positive vibes dude God knows we can all do with some every now and then! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Btw your cheerful, positive, happy-go-lucky and can-do attitude reminds me of that nun in Sister Act – Kathy Naijima I think her name is… She played Sister Mary Patrick who was always very cheerful and giggly, no matter what life threw at her…. Yes I’m an avid Sister Act fan lol ๐Ÿ˜›

  15. Evelyne Upthegrove says:

    Hi. Neat article.

  16. Amit Sodha says:

    Thank you Evelyne! ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. Ben says:

    Wow that person is full of limiting beliefs and with their attitude I can bet they live a miserable life.

    Exchanging your experiences from your life and what you have learnt is definately worth getting something back for. In fact giving the coaching too cleaply is a sure way to make people not appreciate it.

    Passing on your wisdom should be free?

    So milk, bread, food, cars and houses should be free too? :Z

    -Ben

    • Amit Sodha says:

      ๐Ÿ™‚ well said Ben. I’m sure that person is not familiar with the concept of barter or fair exchange for goods and services. Always appreciate the feedback, have an awesome day!

      Amit

  18. Grace says:

    some badassery

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