Why Negative Feedback Is Positive

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“Cute advice, but clearly not for people who really have any business being writers. This BS logic is more for clowns who just want to see themselves on the back of a book cover, and fast. Nothing wrong with motivating those people though; to each his own.”


Right above is an actual comment that I received for an article I recently wrote on bellanaija  (read article).The first time I read the comment my skin went cold…I had that sinking feeling that only writers that pour their heart & soul into their works can understand. But after analyzing the article again I began to get excited and here is why…

One of the biggest obstacles to lots of up and coming writers and bloggers is the fear of negative reviews. The fear is so prevalent that people would avoid posting or writing just to avoid being criticized. But The irony of life is that no matter how brilliant you write, no matter how awesome your book is or your blog is, there is always going to be that one or two persons that would hate it. The funny thing is that when that happens it is a sign that your message has evolved beyond your circle of friends. At that point you should not be discouraged but rather encouraged to write more. Because, if authors and bloggers got discouraged by negative reviews then we would have very few sensational authors writing…If you don’t believe me then see below for some negative reviews to two brilliant and classical books:

“It really drags – so much so, that I didn’t notice the time switches as I plodded through it – and became utterly confused about the course of events…it lacks a focus and a narrative thread to keep this reader interested. An interesting and worthy topic, but a novel in need of a good editor.”
An amazon.com review to Half of a Yellow, which has won several awards and is about to be made into a feature film.


“I thought that I must be the only person who found this a tedious, boring and inane read. My dental assistant (an avid reader) found it equally ridiculous. This could have been reduced to half the amount of pages and I still would have found the story mundane.This ranks up there with one of the worst books I have ever read. Save your money.”
 An amazon.com review to The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo has received, which has sold a gazillion (word used when you are not sure how many millions) copies across the globe.


So if you are a blogger or writer reading this now, don’t get paralyzed by the fear of negative reviews. Rather you should crave it, not just because they are inevitable, but because it is a sign that your writing has reached an audience beyond your three F’s FAMILY.FRIENDS.FANS. And when this happens you might just be on your way to writing a classic. So stop worrying and start writing utiliizing the negative reviews as stepping blocks to writing success.

PS: I was ubber excited when Hugh MacLeod actually commented on the article. Talk about amazing! See picture below…now I can die in peace (I kid I kid):

Ofili is an award winning motivational speaker, author, success coach and entrepreneur who blogs about life, success and entrepreneurial excellence. Follow him on BB pin:32A137F8, twitter , facebook or subscribe to his blog for more success TIPS!” His latest book is titled HOW STUPIDITY SAVED MY LIFE, to find out how it saved his life click ofilispeaks.com/read-book


Wishing You Extreme Success,

Have a question for Ofili? CLICK HERE or leave a comment below. Ofili strives to answer every question he is asked.



Words by Okechukwu Ofili of ofilispeaks.com
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22 comments on “Why Negative Feedback Is Positive

  1. You touch on a very sore topic for all people that desire to create and produce work. Many creative minds struggle with the fear of negative reviews, but whether constructive or not constructive negative feedback…it is an energy that can fuel the desire to improve one’s skill, but also to release oneself from the pressure the world will demand. No matter what you do, if it is your talent and you move towards excellence…you are on a better path.

    I like your point that negative reviews can mean you have transcended the family, friends and fans circle. Who does not need that, especially when putting work out to be consumed? 🙂

    • No matter what you do, if it is your talent and you move towards excellence…you are on a better path.”

      Well said Adeola! Thanks for commenting.

  2. Akwugo Anyaegbunam on said:

    Being in the comfort zone of the 3 F’s can do more harm than good but it takes a lot of guts to feel the familiar skin crawling, hair standing, clammy handed signs of fear and still click on the ‘post’ button anyway! Good stuff…..

    • You are so right Akwugo…it’s all about hitting the POST button and dealing with the repercussions later…

  3. As a professional writer of opinion and commentary, I have learned that people love to comment negatively on most things. It is the nature of the beast, that once you put anything – whether it be something in writing, a business idea, music, or really anything new – into the public domain, it then becomes fodder for all sorts of criticism and even abuse. It’s just human nature – unfortunately – to do that. Humans love to point out holes and flaws, even where none exist. This bothered me when I first started writing – I was not expecting to receive up to (at times) 800 comments slagging me and my work off. I had one man send me an email after a TV appearance telling me how terrible I looked. However, I soon realized that it is absolutely irrelevant what people think. All that matters is that you keep on doing it and keep on putting it out there. If you worry about what people think, all you become is a people pleaser which is a sure fire route to failure. Anyone who puts out any kind of work into the public domain has to develop a very thick skin and a lot of confidence in their own ideas and views. I don’t do work for what people think – I do it because I think it’s important and necessary. Ultimately, I – and others like me – will keep on climbing the ladder of success while the negative commenters sit at home and write nonsense on their computers. 

    • “If you worry about what people think, all you become is a people pleaser which is a sure fire route to failure.” <— could not have said it better. Thanks for the comment Lola, sure adds value to the blog =)

  4. Well said Ofili. I remember the sinking feeling I experienced when my friend who is quite a popular author looked the first draft of my book over and dropped it with an uninterested sigh and a casual “I don’t know. It doesn’t just do it for me.” I was torn between screaming in frustration and just bursting into tears. The result? I rolled up my sleeves and went to work. I started to write the book all over from scratch and ended up with a book that everyone loved. So in the end, we all need those negative words/reviews. They just spur you towards better things.

    • Yo Guest! That is so ubber awesome. A lot of people might have quit at that point but you kept on. What was the title of your book by the way?

  5. Sunesis on said:

    Because We Like To Talk

    It was so ugly we kept on talking about it,…
    we noticed and kept noticing so we could keep talking.

    Its was so beautiful we kept on talking about it,…
    we noticed and kept noticing so we could keep talking.

    It was neither ugly nor beautiful we looked for something else to talk about,…
    we stopped noticing because we were looking for something interesting to talk about.

    Therefore accept and celebrate your difference,…we will keep noticing and talking about you …because we like to talk.

      • Mynameischuks on said:

        Thank you….

        Just one of my random ‘thought provoking thoughts’ being compiled into a book. I felt it accurately throws a summary light to this write up. Although, i never thought of it as a poem…just a creative thought.

  6. Thanks a lot for this and i absolutely agree with you. Sometimes, most of those who give negative comments are not professionals so they might actually not get your style of writing but i guess it’s all good. If you want to keep writing, just go for it. And i guess it is important to keep an open mind so as not to confuse constructive criticism with negativity.

    • “it is important to keep an open mind so as not to confuse constructive criticism with negativity. ” you just made the point that I was struggling to make!

  7. As with most things in life, I find one just needs to develop thick skin..any comment all works out for good in the end as long as your mindset is set to win.

  8. Thanks for this piece. The biggest thing that holds anyone back is fear especially the fear of criticism and people not accepting your ideas. I read that article and I thought it was insightful, not just for those that are writing books, but also for those that have blogs. Like they say, if you don’t believe in yourself, no one will believe in you so keep the spirit on!

  9. Thank you so much Ofili.
    I remember when I started my blog last year, I used to give my articles to a guy to help proof read. Initially, he raised a lots of review points on them which I addressed but later on, things changed. I realized that he will say this article A, B and C, he’s not feeling it and how they were not good enough to be published on the blog. I accepted his words. But then I realized that I was holding myself back and feeling that indeed I wasn’t all that good enough.
    I had to spank myself that though, I need critiques on my articles, I need to be able to draw the line between constructive criticisms and negativisms. I still welcome critiques but not at the detriment of someone making me feel am not good enough. By the way, I got someone else to help me proof read them. It’s a gradual process, we will keep getting better by the day.

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