Why you should ignore the naysayers


Kevin Mangelschots

Every one of us knows at least one person who does everything in their power to not see us succeed. Those people are what we call the naysayers.

But why is it that these kinds of people try to prevent other folks from succeeding and reaching their goals? Is it because they are jealous? Angry? Scared? Or perhaps the reason is more noble, and it is because they want to keep others out of harm’s way?

Let’s find out.

Why should you ignore the naysayers?

Illustration of two sheep judging another sheep with an anarchy sign on its body and a colored crown and the words, “I am just right the way I am”, written beneath it.

  • They don’t matter

    I should clarify this statement a bit.

    The only people you should care about are those who want the best for you and want to see you succeed. If people don’t want you to attempt and pursue something challenging, then it might be because they deem it as dangerous.

    Thus, they actually might be trying to put you out of harm’s way to protect you. Those people do matter since they mean the best for you, even though their means might be questionable.

    The people who are trying to prevent you from succeeding because they don’t want to feel bad about themselves if you’ve succeeded where they failed, or because of their lack of conviction in themselves, don’t matter. It is those folks who you need to cut out of your life as fast as you possibly can.

    They bring nothing of value to your life, and only carry negative energy with them, which they try to spill over to your life as well. My advice, you’re better off without them than with them.

  • You don’t want negative people in your life

    Life is already full of obstacles and suffering as it is. We don’t need other people to pile their negativity on top of that. Rather, we want positive people in our lives who want the best for us and who want to see us succeed.

    Positivity will attract good things and positivity from those around us. That’s why it’s much more valuable to surround yourself with people who attempt to see things from the bright side and try to see the positives in everything, even in the negative events.

  • You don’t want to regret not chasing your dream(s)

    The quote, “If you don't build your dream someone will hire you to help build theirs” written in white letters on a black background. By Tony Gaskins.

    When old people get asked what they regretted the most, they answer that it is not the failures that came along the way. But rather that it is the things they didn’t do and attempted because they were afraid or because they thought they still had the time to do so at a later date.

    That’s why it’s better to try to accomplish your dream(s) rather than simply not attempting to do so out of fear of failure.

    Because what good is life if we don’t pursue that what gives our life meaning? Our goals are what stimulates our existence and what makes it worthwhile living. So don’t be afraid to chase your goals.

  • You being the best person you possibly can be can help a lot of people

    Not only will you benefit from succeeding and being the best you can be, but society as a whole will benefit as well.

    Ask yourself this, is society better off with an incomplete version of you who is too afraid to attempt the challenging things in life, and who is scared to go after his/her goals?

    Or is society better off with the version of you who has accomplished their goals, is confident, and unafraid to attempt the hard things in life?

    I’m willing to bet that the first variant who is afraid to chase after their goals will be more cynical, negative, bitter, jealous, and have less self-esteem than the person who dares to chase after their goals.

    Thus, the person who actively chases and accomplishes their dreams is more likely to help other people out and to spread positivity as a result of their success.

  • You know yourself best

    Only you truly know yourself.

    Every single one of us has secrets. Things they don’t tell to anyone, not even their closest friends or family. That is exactly why only you truly can know what you are capable of if you would properly apply yourself.

    Of course, one needs the necessary amount of introspection as well. Since we need to be adept at analyzing ourselves to find out whether we are adequately skilled or not.

    Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t listen to other people or their advice for that matter. But you should only listen to the people who care about you and whose advice you trust and value. Not those who want to see you fail.

  • Other people might project their personal feelings and emotions on you

    As previously mentioned, the naysayers might just be attempting to project their personal feelings on you without even realizing it themselves.

    They may want to see you fail because they might be arrogant, afraid, and suffering from low self-esteem. In other words, they don’t want you to be better than them and succeed where they have failed because then they would feel bad about themselves.

    That is why some people sometimes have a hidden agenda to try to drag you down along with them. Because in that case, at least they didn’t fail alone. You failed alongside them, and that makes them feel better.

  • Other people don’t have the same vision and abilities as you

    People are different.

    Each one of us has our unique strengths and weaknesses compared to other people. Just because someone failed at something that might not be their particular strength does not mean that you would automatically fail as well. That specific thing might just play to your abilities and strengths.

    Furthermore, vision is important.

    If you go in with the thought that you won’t succeed anyway, then you likely won’t deliver the goods because all those negative thoughts will probably come to fruition. That’s because you are less likely to try as hard as you should.

    If you go in with a positive mindset and vision, however, you are much more likely to succeed because you will give it your all and because you will see the possibilities in everything, even in the negative events.

  • You can inspire other people to forge their own path

    Image of multiple train railways.

    Because you dare to do your own thing, you might inspire other people who are currently afraid or uncertain to attempt to forge their own path toward their destiny.

    It’s hard to forge your road that has not been wandered before. You must create it yourself. And thus, you might not have a blueprint yet from those who went ahead before you. This means that it is likely that you will experience failure and undergo many obstacles along the way.

    People often try to minimize the risk of failure, since it hurts our ego. But, it is precisely those failures that will shape us and allow us to improve and succeed as a result.

  • You can teach and inspire people to ignore the naysayers

    Ignoring the naysayers is tough, especially if there are plenty.

    Yet, people with extraordinary goals need to do exceptional things to succeed and accomplish their goals. If it was easy, everyone would be doing it. And if it was easy, every average person would be able to achieve it as well.

    Agreeable people, which is a personality trait from the big five personality traits, (BFI) are especially prone to listening to the naysayers and thus, not attempting to reach their goals because they are too kind, empathic, and conflict-avoidant.

    That’s why people high in trait agreeableness will forego their own goals and needs in order to satisfy the group and other people. They do so to maintain the harmony of the group.

    Of course, this will eventually lead to bitterness and that individual becoming cynical over time. So even very agreeable people are well-advised learning how to become more assertive and how to place themselves at the forefront from time to time.

  • Naysayers follow their emotions, not reason

    Because naysayers project their emotions on you, be it in an attempt to protect you from harm, because they are arrogant, scared, suffering from low self-esteem, or jealousy, they follow their emotions, not reason and their common sense.

    I’m not saying that emotions aren’t important or can’t say anything about the things we are attempting, but it should always be balanced with reason and common sense. Not only that, but negative emotions like arrogance, fear, and anger are all very bad advisors.

    Some overly emotional people would be wise to listen more to their objective observations, and objective truths, and to utilize their common sense.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What does, “naysayers” mean?

Naysayers can be defined as people who object to, criticize, and oppose something or other people.

Frequently, they are people who routinely express pessimistic perspectives. It is often because they are skeptical, or cynical about something.

Why do naysayers not believe in you?

Image of a woman holding a finger in front of her lips with the quote written, “people who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it”.

  1. Their lack of self-esteem and lack of conviction in themselves

    Doubters do not believe in you because they have low self-esteem themselves. As a result, they try to project that insecurity onto other people as well to not be miserable alone.

    In the eyes of the naysayers, if they can’t do it, others surely can’t either. This low self-esteem might stem from a lot of different things. But often, this problem stems from somewhere in childhood where they were encouraged too little to succeed by their parents and significant others.

    That’s why they now, sometimes unconsciously, or consciously, project their feelings of inadequacy on other people. When consciously trying to prevent people from attempting something challenging, it might be because of one of the following two things. Either to protect the person or because they don’t want to feel bad about themselves because you succeeded where they didn’t.

  2. They don’t want to feel bad about themselves in case you succeed

    We often desperately try to protect our own ego. We do so because our ego is the foundation upon which we build and base our personality. Because of our ego, we frequently can’t possibly imagine other people being better than us at something and, thus, succeeding where we didn’t or simply cannot.

    That’s why the naysayers don’t want other people to succeed. Because they have low self-esteem, are jealous, because their ego is in the way, and/or because they are too arrogant to admit others might be better than them at something.

  3. They want you to be safe

    Small Stay Safe sign on a table or floor.

    The best possible reason why naysayers might not want you to attempt something challenging. It might be that they are worried about your safety. Attempting something difficult is often accompanied by danger.

    People who care about you, especially those who are overly cautious, might attempt to protect you from harm by trying to dissuade you from attempting what they deem as dangerous.

    Of course, this might backfire, since you can’t always run away from challenging goals and times. And if you do always run away when the going gets hard, then you will never have the opportunity to get better and more proficient at those things. Furthermore, life can be a harsh teacher, this is indeed a fact. But we need those harsh lessons in order to protect us from future damage, as danger and challenging times will come in each one of our lives, no matter what we do.

Final note

Lessons Learned statement on paper note pad. Office desk with electronic devices and computer, wood table from above, concept image for blog title or header image. Aged vintage color look.

Ignoring the naysayers is hard, especially if there are a lot of them. Yet, it pays to learn how to become more assertive and how to be self-sufficient without needing too much external confirmation and validation.

Only value the opinion of those around you who genuinely want the best for you and whose advice you trust. It makes no sense listening to people who you don’t trust and who don’t want to see you succeed.

Again, ignore the doubters. Be unafraid to chase your dreams and to become successful at whatever you deem valuable enough to pursue. This will make it, so you don’t regret chasing your goals later on in life when it’s all said and done.

Call to action

“Take action” written with white chalk on a blackboard.

Focus on yourself and walk the path of self-improvement. Search your validation from close friends, family, and most importantly, from yourself by becoming better at what you’re actively pursuing.

Prevent yourself from listening, and seeking validation from people who don’t want the best for you. Seeking too much external validation is a recipe for disaster.