Ask Lee: How to Deal With Negativity on Social Media

Today I’m answering another reader question as part of my Ask Me Anything series here on I received a question to my inbox about how to deal with negativity on social media. Social media has the power to connect people from around the world and do a lot of good. But there’s no denying that there’s also a lot of negativity out there on the Web. When they are hidden behind a screen, people often say things that they would never say to someone’s face. It’s also a whole lot easier for certain posts to be misconstrued on social media or for arguments to escalate more quickly. So since it’s something we’ve all had to deal with at some point or another, here’s my advice for keeping it positive online…

When It’s Someone You Don’t Know or Aren’t Particularly Close With…

If it’s someone you don’t know very well (or at all) who is provoking an argument on social media, my very best advice is to ignore it and remove yourself from the situation. This can take a lot of self-control, but it really is your best option. Think about it: what good is getting into a fight with a stranger on the Internet going to do? Chances are it’s only going to make you feel more frustrated. If you need to, you can block or un-friend the person who is causing problems. They might notice that you blocked them, but if this isn’t someone you know in real life, the argument will end there. On occasion, I’ve had to deal with Internet trolls posting negative comments on my Instagram, and I immediately block them. My motto is: If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t follow me online. I’ve had my moments in the past where I would clap back at someone that was talking crap under my pics but now I just ignore it and laughed at them. I always make an effort to keep it positive, and I expect the same from my followers.

When It’s Coming From a Friend…

If the negativity is coming from a close friend whose relationship you value, take the discussion offline. Call your friend up or suggest you meet for coffee to get to the root of the problem. It’s so hard to tell where someone is coming from online and things can often be misconstrued. You can’t always tell someone’s tone or what they really meant to say. In my personal experience, arguments between friends over the phone and through social media never helps the situation. Talk to the person 1 on 1 and try to keep calm. If you feel like there is no hope for you two then leave. Its okay to not be friends with someone when it becomes toxic and unfixable.

Anyway, I hope that advice helps! This is also a good reminder for all of us to always be kind online and to only put positive energy out there. Being a cyber bully yourself is the only thing worse than being on the other end of it, in my opinion.

Would you like to hear my advice on any other topics?

Leave your questions for me in the comments.

XO Lee

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