How to Cope with Those Who Tear You Down

Photography

Dear Jasmine,
So here I am, trying to put on a workshop to help photogs where I live better themselves in the industry. I’m doing what I think is the right thing. And what do I get? TOTAL backlash from the seasoned photographers where I live. Questioning my motives and saying things similar to “we hate the idea of workshops from people who haven’t been in the business but for a hot minute.” I guess 4 years is a hot minute. I’m sad because MY wedding photographer said it. MY inspiration for wanting to be a wedding photographer in the first place…and I had to hear it from another photographer she was telling it to! It hurts my heart. It hurts my heart, because people who know the true me know that I only want the best for people. I have nothing but pure intentions here! I want to serve, I want to do what is right, but I don’t want people mad or looking down on me. It’s a small town Jasmine. It’s not like I can ignore or get away from these people.
HOW do you deal with situations like this? And WHAT IS a hot minute anyway?!
– Troubled in Tennessee

Dear Troubled in Tennessee,
I looked in UrbanDictionary.com and “Hot Minute” was defined as: The words meaning is a long time. If you ain’t seen someone in a while or if you ain’t been someplace in a while or done something in a while it will be a hot minute. It can mean in years, months, weeks, or days. Just means awhile.
This is great news because a hot minute basically means anything we want it to be. So, boom. We pretty much cleared up that debacle.

In all seriousness, the situation you’re facing is painful. I’m sure it strikes you in vulnerable parts of your soul because you believe, truly, you’re built to help others. Based on this belief, you must push all negativity out of your mind. This, of course, is extraordinarily difficult, but here’s advice that’s helped me through the years…
When I first started sharing photo tips and tutorials on my blog, I heard through the grapevine that other photographers were talking trash. They were asking questions like whether I was qualified to be teaching and why anyone pay attention to what I said. And here’s the kicker: I couldn’t disagree with them! I didn’t know why people would pay attention.

But people did. Not only did people pay attention, we rallied together to help others who were in the same place we were. If there’s a demand for your help/advice, then you’ll be able to rally photographers around you in the same way…regardless of what others say.

You see, there will be industry giants who are incredibly successful and wildly talented and their lives will appear glamorous on the side of the computer on which you sit. But to the person who just got a camera, that giant? He’s too far along in his career to be relatable and too far advance to teach the basics in a way you can…because what you offer is different. What you offer is YOU.

In light of this, own your role. Embrace who you are. Love where you live. Celebrate those who’ll listen to you. Continue to help, support, and give…those who’ll spew negativity and disbelief will eventually drop their pitchforks and return to the cave in which they reside.

Keep running, and never look back.

Stay Fabulous,
j*