On tall poppies, naysayers, and loud noises
Even if you life the perfectly virtuous, moderately successful and good life, you will still have naysayers to deal with—be them people who just critique or run you down, or people who misrepresent you, slate you, slander you, belittle you, and are out to get youl. And this is just if you live the (quote) normal life. It is amplified if you are trying to do something above-average, against the grain, big—because you’re going to stand out.
Learning to deal with the inevitable criticisms and negative energy that will be fired your way is a personal and sometimes painful process; but is an essential one, if you want to continue walking a different path to the rest of the heard. A large part of the ‘coping’ method, though, is actually very simple: just ignore them.
The fact is, most criticism tends to be the product of envy, jealousy, misunderstanding, boredom and plain old nastiness; one need not wear armour for these shots, because despite their loud noises and scaremongering antics, they are empty. The rare bits of criticism that are accurate are not to be taken offensively; rather, they should be taken as fuel, inspiration, and, most of all, as learning resources.
Good criticism helps you improve, whilst bad criticism, if taken seriously, is demoralising; better to ignore it.
It helps to remember that the tallest poppy in the poppy field gets the most attention; that it is the most vulnerable, the most envied, and usually gets picked first. Getting picked is not necessarily a bad thing; getting pulled down or cut at the stem, however, is never pleasant.