This concept may seem alien or nonsensical however this thinking is used worldwide in the fashion, television and media industries.

Here’s a scenario –

You’re running the gauntlet at work. The deadline for the artwork of your magazine cover is due. Tomorrow it goes to the publishers then out to the adoring public. The magazine is the talk of the town. A high-profile fashion magazine loved by millions of women.

Walking to work the next morning, proud that you met your deadline with what you considered a masterpiece of modern artwork, you hear a woman talking to her friend saying, “Did you see the cover of Blah Blah Magazine? It’s completely crap. I’d sack whoever came up with that idea!”

Arriving at work your Boss calls you into his office and instructs you to shut the door behind you. Feeling a little rattled by the feedback on the street, you fear he will reprimand you with a warning or worse fire you.

“Your cover is getting rave reviews. The public hates it. We have never had so many page hits since the first publication two years ago.  And sales are skyrocketing.  Good work!”

The moral here is, if others respond strongly to something you’ve done – that’s positive – even if their reaction is negative. By receiving this strong reaction, you are receiving publicity. And there is a saying that goes like this in the world of media – Any publicity is good publicity.

In our everyday lives, this could be the case too. Don’t let negative criticism get you down – find the positive in your work, your ideas and your creativity. To be successful you sometimes must build a strong foundation even to the point of negativity towards your work becoming an endorsement.

Roy Lichtenstein did. He was an abstract painter in the 1950’s, however, his work was not really acknowledged. In 1961 he painted the first Pop Art canvas. The people hated it. They regarded it as trash. He painted more, even exhibiting his new style of art, to the utter disgust of the critics. But this was the strongest reaction he had ever encountered. This negative was turned into a positive as the younger art community engaged in his work and cemented Lichtenstein a place in art history.

Be positive about negatives; create, inspire and lead with the stones other people throw at you.

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