How to Deal with Haters

Haters

Imagine the following scenario: You’re sitting around a dinner table at a restaurant and everybody places an order for a meal:

  • Person 1: Chicken and broccoli please!
  • Person 2: I’ll have fish, quinoa, and a salad please.
  • Person 3: I’ll take the steak, asparagus, and sweet potato please.
  • Person 4: I’ll take a double cheese burger and chili cheese fries please!

For the sake of argument, let’s assume person 1, 2, and 3 are generally healthy, and person 4 is overweight.  Can you see persons 1-3 saying the following:

  • “Are you seriously going to eat that?”
  • “Are you sure you should be eating that?”
  • “You’re overweight enough, you should probably eat more like us.”

…of course not! That would be considered incredibly rude, inconsiderate, and downright mean.  That person can eat however they want, right? It’s their life! Compare that to the following situation:

  • Person 1: I’ll take a medium pizza with sausage and side of garlic bread.
  • Person 2: I’ll have the chicken parmesan pasta and salad with extra ranch.
  • Person 3: I’ll please have the lasagna, and let’s get nachos for the table.
  • Person 4: I’ll take a chicken salad please, dressing on the side.

Can you see persons 1-3 saying the following to person 4?:

  • “Oh come on, why eat like that?”
  • “Come on, live a little!  You’re too skinny already.”
  • “Jeez, I feel bad for you having to eat like that.”

If you’re a health-conscious individual (or are working on becoming one), and you are still hanging around your unhealthy friends, I bet you’ve dealt with that second scenario on more than one occasion.

When people eat things that are unhealthy, everybody keeps their mouth shut…but when somebody goes in the other direction and tries to better themselves, suddenly everybody feels the need to chime in.

What are you supposed to do when you find yourself in this situation?

It’s one thing if it’s a random stranger at a party that tells you: “well, I like to enjoy my food, so I could NEVER eat like you.”  But what do you do when it’s a co-worker, friend, or family member?

Today, we’re gonna learn how to deal with haters.

Be More Like Luigi

Luigi

If you spend enough time on the internet, you’ve probably come across the most recent (and hilarious) internet meme: Luigi’s Death Stare from Mario Kart 8.

Here’s the lovable sidekick brother, Luigi, laying waste to the competition with this look of pure revenge on his face:

Luigi Death Stare Compilation

We’re talking about Luigi here!

With few exceptions, Luigi has always been the sidekick – an afterthought. Now, as the meme has taken off, Luigi has broken out of his shell (by throwing shells!) to say: “NO MORE!”

Be more like Luigi: carve out your own defiant identity. Instead of being okay with being like everybody else you’re surrounded with – most likely unhealthy folks – you decided to buck the trend, throw a few red shells, and change your life.

It’s time you also took the confidence and self-assurance that comes with this new bad-ass lifestyle.

So, step one of dealing with haters: realize that the changes and positive improvements to your life are not going to go unnoticed. Remember, we’re Rebels after all.

This can elicit a predictable response…

Haters gonna Hate

haters gonna hate

Although you’ll have your share of friends/family that cheer you on, you’ll also have plenty of people who are quick to challenge your attempts at living a healthier life.

Here’s the truth: most people don’t like change – they themselves want to change but don’t want to put forth the effort and energy to make it happen. When they see somebody else making positive changes, it can make them feel insecure about their own situation.

Rather than change themselves, they:

  • Try to drag you back down to their level by telling you to cheat, “live a little.”
  • Belittle your efforts with comments like “I like to enjoy myself” and “I like to have fun.”
  • Explain to you why they can’t change themselves with excuses, “must be nice for you…”

These comments all serve a singular purpose – to make haters feel better about themselves.

It’s not that these people truly want to put you down or see you fail, but these remarks take way less effort (and are much less scary) than if they actually tried to change themselves.They might be afraid of trying to change their lives and failing, or maybe they have already tried and failed, and see your success as proof that they have failed themselves.

We all have these people in our lives, and it can truly be depressing – it feels like we’re a mutant; the only person in our group that wants to ‘evolve’ and thus must deal with being an outcast.

I’m reminded of two more memes that has always made me laugh.  Haters gonna hate!

haters gonna hate
And if haters are gonna hate, slaters are gonna slate:

haters gonna hate slaters gonna slate

What’s the point of these two ridiculous phrases?

To remind us that some people are just unhappy, and they will hate on success and change for others.  That if you’re getting “hated on,” it’s often because you’re doing something right.

I have to constantly remind myself of a phrase I learned from Seth Godin:

You will be judged, or you will be ignored.

If you are afraid of people judging you for trying to change your life or becoming healthy, your other option is to be ignored – to become one of the masses, that amorphous blob that is neither awesome nor exciting…but hey, it’s safe!

How to deal with haters

hulk

Just because haters are inevitable doesn’t mean we’re powerless.

You are GOING to be judged for being different – for changing. So, I present to you the five-step plan for dealing with detractors:

1) Understand that judgement is inevitable. We all get judged every minute of every day, no matter what we do (or don’t). I’ve officially adopted the stance that if I’m going to get judged for something, “eating healthy and choosing to exercise” is a pretty damn good thing! This required a mental shift to realize this was almost like a “badge of honor,” for being the “weird one.”

As Steve Jobs once said, here’s to the crazy ones:

2) Consider the source.  Constructive criticism can be an important part of growth and change, but it’s also very important to consider your sources.  If you are getting criticized for your new lifestyle by somebody who is out of shape, unhappy, overweight, and generally miserable, it’s probably not worth your time and effort to worry about it!

I often just smile and nod (while being proud on the inside), or make a simple, “haha I know, I’m weird right?” I certainly got some weird looks I got this year on The Rock Boat when I’d leave every day to go do my PLP challenge – it was worth the effort.

3) Get them on board.  We have friends and family that probably want to change too, and don’t realize the damage their comments/remarks are doing to your efforts. Explain to them that you’re trying to change and you want their support and help.

Tell them you’re trying to win a contest at work, or that you have a personal challenge that you’re trying to complete, and that you want to see if you can actually follow through with it.

These well-meaning detractors can become your biggest supporters if you ask for their help – everybody wants to feel like they’re making a difference, right?  And who knows, you might inspire them with your actions.

4) Consider how you spend your most valuable asset: time.  As they say, you are the average of the five people you associate most with.  If you are spending your time with negative nancies and haters who are not taking steps to better their lives, it probably feels like you are running through quicksand.  Instead of surrounding yourself with people that are dragging you down, why not surround yourself with people that elevate and pull you up?

Choose your group wisely! It’s tough to change friends, and it’s even tougher to admit when a friendship has run its course…but it can be an important part of growth, too.  We have a finite amount of time on this planet, and you have 100% control of how that time gets spent.  Surround yourself with people that want you to be better.

5) Understand that you’re not alone.  My favorite emails are the ones that say something like “When I found Nerd Fitness, I felt like I found my new home.”  More often than not, Nerd Fitness Rebels are the one ‘mutant’ amongst their friends – they want to share their stories of success about deadlifts and weight lost, but their friends only care about death matches and dungeon raids. They stumble across Nerd Fitness, and like the mutants in X-men, they realize they are NOT alone.  That’s the Nerd Fitness Rebellion (heck, like X-men, we have our own Academy!)

You can still have unhealthy friends and family members – just make sure you are ALSO spending time with people who are healthier and stronger than you too (even if it’s just on our message boards). We all need that reminder that it’s okay to get excited about squats, vegetables, AND Skyrim 🙂

How do you deal with haters?

StormTrooper mario kart

“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” – Gandhi

I realize Gandhi’s struggles were far different than just trying to live healthier, but I think it’s an applicable quote to what us rebels are going through when we try to change our lives.

I want to hear from you, and hear how you’ve dealt with haters on your journey.

We have a few hundred thousands Rebels that want to know your story, as they’re probably struggling with the same people and the same obstacles.

How have you dealt with haters in your life?

And if you are struggling with haters now, how can we help you navigate the situation properly?

Remember, be more like Luigi, and work on your death stare.

The future is bright!

-Steve

PS –  I’m currently in Portland OR for the World Domination Summit! I know there are a lot of other rebels in attendance, so if you see me this weekend please come say hey!

###

photo source: 1upLego: Hulk, ryanmotoNSB: Haters Gonna Hate, David Shaw: No Fun Haters Allowed, Stefan: Storm Trooper Mario Kart, Ana Ruth Rivera: Luigi

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119 thoughts on “How to Deal with Haters

  1. Honestly, I’ve been dealing with haters my whole life. I weighed in at just over 24 stone at my biggest and got constant remarks from others. When I started cycling I got people telling me I’d never stick to it and there was no point. When I started lifting I got the same rubbish, and again when I started running last month. You just get to a point where you learn to block these people out. I’ve dropped down to 17 stone and I’m the fittest and happiest I’ve ever been because I just ignored the naysayers and did what I wanted. Luigi death stare FTW.

  2. My biggest ‘hater’ was my mother, who would just ignore the fact I was trying to change my eating habits, despite me making my decision as low-impact on her life as possible (for example, if she made spaghetti and meatballs, I’d ask to just have the meatballs and do my own veg). After a while, the nagging about going running and swimming took its toll, so I invited her to come with me, educated her about calorie requirements etc. and now she’s trying to be healthier too!

    If you can’t beat them, make them join you.

  3. I’d lost weight & my body became stronger, sculpted & toned while undergoing my 1st contest prep. 7 mos of effort & hard work was paying off physical dividends. on my 6th mo of the program my brother commented that I looked sickly & anorexic & suggested I stop my program. Fast forward 3 mos after my prep ended my brother, who’s sporting a huge belly, eating fast foods & taking meds for his heart condition, asked me for advice on how to lose his “gut”. Give it time, sometimes the haters will seek you out for much needed help & advice!

  4. I found your article very interesting. I just wanted to point out that while it is great to stand up for the lifestyle changes you are making you shouldn’t expect everyone else to make them with you. I am fairly large, and I have a friend who has lost a great deal of weight over the past two years. When she began losing weight I tried to be supportive of her and suggested we trade our weekly girl’s night dinner to something else, or when we did eat I told her to pick the restaurant so that we could be sure there was something on the menu she could have. In spite of this however, our friendship slowly ended. At that time I wasn’t at a point in my life where I wanted to lose weight, and she constantly criticized everything I did or ate telling me how she was doing so much better than me. I suppose in her mind she wanted to help me and felt that to do so she needed to point out every time I made a poor choice. But to me all I could hear was the constant criticism. Instead of helping I actually ended up becoming depressed and gaining 30 lbs. After about a year and a half of this, we stopped hanging out as I was tired of the constant criticism and she didn’t want to associate with someone who ‘didn’t care how they looked’. I am now at a point now where I am trying to change my life, but our friendship has become strained and I doubt we will ever be as close as we used to be. The point I am trying to make, making change in your life is wonderful, and encouraging others to change their life is great too, but don’t become a hater yourself if other people aren’t ready to make that change.

  5. It’s a relief to know I’m not the only teen on here! Right now I’m trying to lose weight, and whenever I turn down a dessert or something, I always am made to feel like some sort of alien. They always are offended if I don’t take any, which is hard for me because I also try to make everyone happy. This has led to many of my diet failures.

    Thanks Steve! This was very helpful!

  6. Most of the people in my life are very supportive and go out of their way to tell me how good I look and how proud they are of me. The only time anyone has ever been negative was when my best friend and I went to Baskin Robins and she got mad because I got a kids scoop and she wanted to get 2 scoops but didn’t want to feel like a fatass for eating 3 times as much ice cream as me. I just told her that one of us needed to lose 100 lbs and one of us didn’t and therefore one of us could afford a second scoop and one of us couldn’t. She frowned and then got a kid’s scoop. i call that a success.

  7. At 5’4″ weighing 155, I am by far the smallest person in my family. Unfortunately they are my mine critics when it comes to getting healthy. The phrase I end up using most with them is, “There’s a reason for that.” At my niece’s birthday a month ago (the theme was CANDY), my cousin and sister noticed I was gorging on the candy station like everyone else. They asked why, and I told them that it was too much sugar for me. My cousin then said, “Why are you so paranoid about it?!? You’re the skinniest person in the family!” to which I replied, “There’s a reason for that.”

    They are constantly qualifying their critique with, “…but your the skinniest.” Usually my reply ends the conversation.

  8. There’s a lot of room for insecurity here from the perspective of all parties concerned.
    I’m going to interject here with the thought that the term “hater” might be a bit too strong. If it’s your mom causing the negativity, please remember that (in all likelihood) your mother loves you – she, however, has been evolutionarily programmed (like pretty much everyone else) to fear change and love the status quo. The sabotage is probably unconscious, though it may very well be that evolutionarily programmed fear of change manifesting itself through criticism, nagging, or some other negativity. I don’t know the answer to dealing with this negativity, suppose it’s different for everyone. But I know it’s just as easy for the person who’s trying to make the change to cover up their own insecurity by saying “Oh, you just don’t get it” or to feel superior because he or she is really putting forth the effort in comparison to a family member or friend. I’ve had to deal with this insecurity because the negative/sabotaging feedback is usually coming from someone whom I truly care about and whose opinion I generally respect very highly, which makes me doubt myself too.

    IMHO the best way to deal with it is to make clear that it is your decision as an adult, and that you recognize that people sometimes say these things out of concern (Ramit Sethi calls them ‘concern trolls’ Ha!) and that you appreciate their concern, but in no uncertain terms say to them “The most loving and caring thing that you can do for me, is to support my journey by trusting that I know what I’m doing and celebrate my progress with me, so I can be around for all the people I love for as long as possible.”

  9. In India, fat/obese people are often encouraged to eat more
    (not that others aren’t :P) because feeding others is considered to be polite, expected and generous!

  10. Exactly! We usually try to funnel a discussion in a manner which leads to the conclusion we are trying to justify. Obviously personal experiences will always color our arguments.

  11. Well that looks more like an I’M A NERD stare 😛 Big wet eyes on a pale face. Although the preceding and succeeding expressions would be helpful.

  12. Hehe
    Although my family and friends have come around after seeing the results to accept that I know what I’m doing, they often seem to forget that having a higher IQ and obsessive reading habits also means I probably know better 😛

    Results speak for themselves, so just tune them out and keep moving!
    Fortunately I’ve got a highly supportive family who encourage even when they disagree, but I know this is very often not the case.
    Sadly you can’t pick a family 😛
    Unless you’ve got major family issues like emotional/verbal/physical abuse, just pass the next few years ignoring them!

  13. Speaking as a 24 yr old male, muscles ARE feminine! Who the **** likes a bony figure?

  14. I’m a 24 yr old guy, and I’ve been cooking since the age of 7-8. If you can prepare your own meals (well meals you can eat :P) just eat separately!

  15. If a person genuinely enjoys being who he/she is, judging others seems quite silly 🙂

  16. Hehe!

    Ditto. Even if people don’t say that outright, they say “I can’t GIVE UP good food!”
    In my experience, eating sweet, salty or carb-rich food is symptomatic of stress and frustration. Mental reform MUST come before physical transformation,

  17. I’ll admit that I did tease someone about the salad they ordered one time, but it was because it was something like a $10 “Wedge Salad” so we were expecting something somewhat impressive. When served it was literally 1/4 of a head of lettuce (the wedge) and the only thing the server offered was some freshly ground black pepper with it. The concept of a $40 head of lettuce was just extremely funny. It wasn’t really presented in any special way, made to look different, or anything. Just 1/4 head of lettuce on a plate.

    Other than that, I’ve been “that guy” on both sides of the order at some point and just let any comments slide. I don’t tend to comment on someone else’s choices too much other than “that looks/smells good” once it arrives. 🙂

  18. This is perfect! Having recently jumped on the fitness train by lifting, some family members (who previously criticized my body so much that it pushed me into a bout of depression) has taken issue with the way I’m choosing to approach getting healthy (their new nickname for me is “Arnold” – like Schwarzenegger) and don’t want me to “go overboard”. I’m just going to do what I do, because i’m getting stronger and eventually I’ll be in great shape too.

    Also, sorry about being a Grammar Nazi, but I’m Indian and it’s a pet peeve to see Gandhi misspelt as Ghandi. It just happens so often. Otherwise, the article’s great. Keep being awesome.

  19. Hehe!
    If you don’t like the conversation, what could be better than ending it?
    Anyway, Paranoia is what leads to vigilance. Great Job!

  20. Well said!

    Feeling strongly about things certainly makes people say and do things they normally wouldn’t. As you said, not everyone feels strongly enough about getting fit to get started right away.
    We need to find our own reasons for making those changes, whether by will or by whim. Sticking with such major dietary upheaval is difficult enough without lack of motivation.

  21. True!
    People are hardwired to resist change, and only do what they feel is RIGHT. Eating tasty and SUFFICIENT food is considered a reward and necessity of sorts. Ironically, I started exercising regularly since my father goes for long runs daily. It was not the reason exactly, but a reminder of sorts.
    But when I started cutting off pure-carb and junk foods from meals and replacing them with protein-rich substitutes, he was concerned that I wasn’t eating enough calories. A few months later, he’s come around to embrace a similar diet although to a lesser extent.
    I haven’t yet met anyone who “hates” me, explicitly anyway, so it’s kind of difficult to imagine such a situation. However, people who care about us say such things more out of actual concern than just jealousy or hatred!

  22. I’ve never been one to care about what people think about anything, except when I’m trying to learn something from them. Parents, siblings, friends, colleagues, teachers and of course strangers.
    Some are jealous, some are inflexible, some encouraging and others patently ignorant.
    I’m trying to keep getting fitter and fitter, and taking people along for the ride is kind of fun. But forcing them to accept and “follow” me is quite similar to making others convert to my “religion” in other contexts.
    I usually just get out of such pointless conversations, unless the other person is genuinely concerned. Pointing out facts and figures and generally showing them that I know what I’m doing is enough to convince them to leave my diet alone!

  23. I love this post, it totally reminds me of my family. As soon as I forgo some fries for a spinach smoothie I get called out for being a “rabbit”

    The tips really reinforce that I need to stick to my beliefs and not feel bad about things you really should feel good about!

    Now I must go practice my Luigi Death Stare in the mirror, to unleash on the next unknowing person who tries to make me feel bad about my lifestyle choices.
    (http://growth-flexv.com/index.html)

  24. I started a 30 day paleo challenge with a group of friends/coworkers. People will come up to us at every single meal asking why we don’t eat real food ex. Cheetos, grilled cheese, pizza…you get the point. These are people that this article pin points…haters! The group has stayed strong for the first two weeks! This article hits it on the head! But what I’ve noticed is how intrigued some of these haters have been recently. After bringing in stuffed peppers or a spinach salad with grilled chicken and homemade balsamic vinegarette. They start asking questions on where did you get that or how do you know how to do that and begins a whole new discussion. Very neat to see and be a part of!

  25. Out of all the pieces of the article people chose to
    let get under their skin I don’t understand “If you’re a
    health-conscious individual (or are working on becoming one), and you are still
    hanging around your unhealthy friends, I bet you’ve dealt with that second
    scenario on more than one occasion.” Do people really stop hanging with their
    friends due to healthy eating? How is that a friend? They chilled with you fat
    I am sure a skinny you can chill with them now.

  26. Now you got me curious… How ARE you losimg weight? 🙂 I promess I won’t make any hater’s comments 😉

  27. You should hear the comments I get when I tell people I quit drinking. My favorite is when my closest friends — those who were “hurt” the most by my personal decision — take it up on them to inform new acquaintances on the table that I don’t drink.
    Dealing with the “haters” is a huge part of the process. We HAVE to spend some energy thinking how we’re going to adress it. Great post.

  28. Fair enough. Honestly, I think this is hard to quantify because our opinions are going to come down to our own experience. Personally, I’ve had significantly more comments/criticism when I’m eating healthy – and this is when I’ve been thinner AND heavier. My family commented once that I should start being more careful about what I ate when I was getting a little chunky. Other than that, though, almost all of the criticism my diet has gotten has been about eating too little (I wasn’t) or “too healthy.” Some of this was even from the family members who had originally told me I needed to cut back. In these particular instances, I think my friends would have been considered rude if they’d told me I need to watch what I was eating because I was fat.
    Either way, it’s incredibly rude and frustrating for people to be condescending about what you eat. I know that food-policing on a public level is worse when you’re heavier, and that’s totally unacceptable. I can’t even imagine what I’d say if a stranger analyzed what was in my shopping cart.
    This article is written from Steve’s personal experience. It might not match yours, and that’s fine. What he’s talking about does happen, though, and it’s just as irritating and rude.

  29. Wait, did you say Rock Boat? We’ve been sailing the last three consecutive years. Fitness isn’t my issue, but my very recognizable face definitely gets attention. My husband and I will be on our fourth boat next year. See you there?

  30. I just somehow do not try to explain myself anymore…. I just try to change the topic and know inside that I am doing as well as I can. At the same time I try to be open to constructive criticism. And I find very very hard to find a support group.

  31. You probably wont like it…! 😉

    I cut out flour and sugar products almost completely: the only thing I have in those categories are oatmeal and fruit for breakfast.

    I also weigh and measure my food using a food scale. Breakfast is 1oz oatmeal (weighed before cooking), 6 oz of fresh fruit, and either 4 oz of protein or 8 oz of plain nonfat yogurt. Lunch is 4 oz of protein (usually turkey, chicken or fish), 6 oz of cooked vegetables, 6 oz of salad and 1 tbsp of dressing. Dinner is only slightly different with 8oz of salad. I plan to adjust this up a bit once I hit my goal weight, but for now I still have 100 lbs to go before I reach that!

    Throughout the day I only drink water or zero calorie drinks, though I am trying to cut out the soda.

    The first two weeks or so I had cravings from hell, but once my body got used to filling up on the good foods, it was easier to just say “no”. I also learned to tell people “I can’t eat that” instead of “I shouldn’t eat that”. It reenforces what I am doing for myself, and people assume that I have an allergy, rather than trying to get me to “live a little”.Finally, I see this as a lifestyle overhaul: this isn’t a diet that I will abandon the minute I get to my goal.

    At the end of the day, I am doing this for me, not anyone else. Whatever YOU choose, do it for yourself and do it because it makes you feel good every time you stick to it!

  32. In other words, enforcing ABSOLUTE control! 😀
    I’m not so far from that myself. I’m reasonably fit but put on over 20 pounds when I quit smoking two years ago. After a thousand attempts (restrictive calories, intense training, cardio, strength), low-carb seems to be doing it. But people do go a little puzzeld, especially when it’s refeed day and I’m going earnestly on those rice-and-beans but refuse chocolate and banana, the go huh?
    Hope you all the luck with your journey!

  33. As a former obese person, I NEVER experienced anyone commenting on my poor food choices. I’m not saying there’s not evil people out there or even a well intentioned person that would comment about an overweight person’s food choices BUT and this is a BIG OLE BUTTTT the amount of people that think they have the right to comment negatively on a healthy person’s diet is INFINITELY larger. Its like because you’re smaller and eating healthy that most people feel like its okay for them to make whatever comments they want to make about your eating habits and body type! When I became a vegetarian that number increased even more. Apparently healthy, moderately healthy, and completely unhealthy people are food experts, nutritionists, even fitness gurus when someone else is trying to live a healthy and happy lifestyle! I just think in general unless someone is asking you about your own lifestyle or what you think about theirs, do NOT just put your two cents in about what they are doing right or wrong in your opinion because its just that, an opinion.

  34. Absolutely false. I was obese and never heard direct negative comments to me. I hear negative comments ALL THE TIME now that I live a healthy lifestyle. Its socially acceptable to make fun of the healthy person, but rude to make fun of the unhealthy obese person. I’ve lived both and hear much more negative now that I’m healthy.

  35. Rock on Steve!! Good write up as usual. Luckily I haven’t run into many or really any haters yet. Over the past 3 months I have lost 20 lbs just by eating differently. I give those props to you and this site. I went about 80% Paleo and it has been awesome! I don’t work out, but I really need to start and I plan on it. My ultimate goal in to lose 55 lbs and get back to my freshman year of highschool weight. I am almost down to 220 which was my end of college weight. The haters can hate on me all they want, this guy right here is chuggin right along. As Major Payne so elequently put it, “Toot Toot!”

  36. Yeah, I have a really hard time “eyeballing” correct portions for meals, so I needed something absolutely concrete to follow. I imagine most people can do something a lot more forgiving that this!

    Low carb seems to work for me too! Carbs in wheat or flour products in particular seem to be impossible for me to monitor. I just cannot stop eating the stuff, so its just best that I do not eat it at all.

    When I tell people “no sugar, no flour” I swear their eyes almost pop out of their heads. “What do you EAT?”

    Actually, quite a bit! =)

  37. Good tips, but in some situations it’s harder to simply say “haha” and get on board. I believe it’s more important to take a stand.

    Some people will straight up offend and insult you, and I’ve found it’s best to call them out on their bullshit. Don’t pick a fight with anybody but if somebody is mean and puts you down, especially in front of other people, call them out on it.They will be shocked but will be reluctant to make similar comments in the future since you’ve shown won’t stand for them.

    Also, if people around you are generally unsupportive of your motivation to change, they shouldn’t be the people you want in your life. It’s hard to comprehend leaving a group of friends, especially if you’ve known them for long, but I speak from experience when I say that real friends would never act like that. I was scared to leave my old group of friends, but when I went for it, know what happened?

    I found new, better friends who not only supported my change, but encouraged it. THAT’S the kind of people you need in your life.

  38. Awesome article! I can so much relate to it and it always happens to me whenever I talk about the way I eat… I will say “I follow a paleo diet… I don’t eat refined, process and all that white junk food out there” then people will just look at me ij a weird way and say “What? Live a little! You only love once! C’mon, one bite won’t hurt”… Sometimes I wish people could just respect the way I eat the same way I don’t try to change their eating habits if they’re not ready for it…. But, yeah, I always say I’m weird too, lol, and that kinda makes them stop the judgement for a while….

  39. I have been sugar free for about 2.5 years and have been eating as clean a diet as I can manage for almost the same period of time; I am also skinny and run 3-4 times a week. This type of conversation happened all the time at the start and I ended up getting on my high horse, but it never did anybody any good.

    Now I have pushed through that barrier and the ‘haters’ have given up and most of them have quietly come to me individually and asked why I eat the way I do and how I gave up all of the bad food.

    Some still think that I’m weird, but it is only a few. Most new people I meet are curious not judgmental (at least to my face)

  40. He has a point y’know. Don’t assume he/she is a hater because they are pointing out something that is true in their own life. Show of hands, how many of us (overweight/obese) have been called out by friends/family/strangers for what we were eating? I would speculate MOST of us have. My best guess would be that Steve has never been on the receiving end of that kind of criticism so it does not seem common to him, totally understandable. It is actually viewed as acceptable by most people, because obesity, because health, because etc. Aside from the one false assumption (that fat people are never rebuked for their food choices), this is still a valuable article. I have received both kinds of criticism. Now that I am losing weight, I get a lot of “live a little”s and “it’s just one [insert crap food item here]”, but nothing compared to what I heard from immediate family members when I was eating whatever I felt like. Personally, I’d rather endure an offhanded remark about my healthy habits than a “nobody will ever love you unless you stop eating like a pig and lose weight”. If you think it doesn’t happen because it hasn’t happened to you personally, I hope for your sake that you remain ignorant.

  41. Simple i kept working while others laughing and when my success becomes to shine their dark laugh’s began to stop ! Its NEVER GIVE UP Method 🙂

  42. I love reading comments like this! They help more people than you know. Jesse your progress is really inspirational and putting your foot down and being committed to diet rules is awesome! cool life hack though you mentioned “I also learned to tell people “I can’t eat that” instead of “I shouldn’t eat that”. “. Saying can’t is good for other people to get the message you won’t eat that but saying don’t is a good way to help conserve will power. To explain here is a great NF article! http://www.nerdfitness.com/blog/2013/04/08/the-paleo-diet-debunked/. this is the study http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.1086/663212?uid=3739392&uid=2&uid=3737720&uid=4&sid=21103992560621 and another article on saying no http://jamesclear.com/how-to-say-no all linked by the original nf article

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