Accept That You Can’t Make Everyone Happy

Morris, a reader, recently left a comment saying “People live their life in fear and warp their actions and behavior on this fear that others will disapprove or belittle them… I, as an artist especially have learned that you will always piss someone off. You can’t make everyone happy.”

There is much truth in his statement. In this article, I will describe my own experiences from which I’ve learned you can’t make everyone happy, and tell you why that’s alright.

I dunno. Seems like the usual ‘Get off your duff and wealth and happiness will follow’ type website. By someone neither wealthy, nor happy.

The reason geeks don’t have lives is that their social skills are underdeveloped. This is the same reason that the guy in the story is addressed as “the computer guy” by the little kid in the story. He seems not to have any other interesting characteristics — whose fault is that?

Hey, moron, if you don’t like the reaction you get when you tell people you work in computer support, stop telling people you work in computer support.

Um, that sad commentary describes every job in IT. If you don’t like it then acquire a blue Best Buy shirt and promptly forget everything you know about technology. Some foreigner will gladly do it cheaper.

This guy has all the business acumen of a prostitute wearing a t-shirt that says “I have Herpes”.. Damn man, get some sticktoitiveness.

My god what a whiner! Seriously. I’m a “computer guy” and have been professionally for years. Even on my worst days I’m not half as defeatist as this guy. All jobs and industries have their downsides. The real issue is that not all the people in IT are cut out for IT. This guy isn’t. Sorry. Its probably the truth. Not to mention, if you just want a desk job in IT then get into programming, dont do support or systems admin. If you’re not bright enough to code you’re not bright enough to do support or sys admin.

This ‘computer guy’ isn’t talented or anything. How the hell can it take 5 hours to fix a computer. Spyware can be removed with hijackthis within 10 minutes. Prepared Windows installs can be done within 25 minutes and hardware diagnosing ain’t rocket science either. In a worst case scenario backing everything up and doing a reinstall with your shiney script and portable HD will take 40 minutes. This guy should sharpen up his business morals and enjoy the idea being employed at all.

So let me get this straight… you graduate college, get a great job (which most people would kill for) then get tired of it, go to another, repeat, etc etc and we are somehow supposed to feel sorry for you? Not only that, but we’re supposed to donate money to your deadbeat ass? Here’s a reality check for you – work is HARD WORK that’s why it’s called WORK and not SLEEP! Get off your dead-ass and get a real job like the rest of us. Try having a wife, 3 kids, being laid-off, and having to scratch around to feed them. Maybe you should donate money to ME or at least go out and make yourself useful and stop WHINING about the fact that you have to WORK for a living. Do us all a favor to, quit writing, cause you suck. Bet you won’t print this in your whiny self-righteous blog. Kiss off lazy ass.

This guy needs to get over himself. There are enough shit jobs out there with no thanks included. Computer Guys should be different in just which way? Feeling worn out? Find another job. Whooptie crap. How often do you think nurses, garbagemen, electric linemen, train drivers, truck drivers, and a litany of other jobs that keep things running are appropriately thanked? Welcome to life, jerkbag.

All of the above are actual quotes from readers.

For one reason or another, these readers believed that the articles I’ve written were worthy of public mockery.

I’m comfortable with that.

These “one-time-readers” can say what they like about me or my site, and vow never to visit ever again. They’re not obligated to enjoy, agree with, or applaud my writing — they’re entitled to their own opinions. They can think that everything I have to say is crap, and go on to try and convince the rest of the world that everything I have to say is crap.

I can’t control what other people think about me, my site, or my writing.

What I can control though, is what I think about these things myself.

I enjoy writing. I also enjoy sharing things I’ve written. In creating this blog, I’ve embraced what makes me happiest and feel confident that I could do this for as long as I want and never get tired of it. I’m very proud of myself for realizing my dream and making changes in my life so that I could pursue it.

The truth is, my dream never involved an expectation to write things that everyone likes. I recognize how I can’t accomplish that, because I understand that nobody can accomplish that. Nobody can make everyone happy.

You should therefore accept that you can’t make everyone happy either — and know that it’s alright, because nobody expects you to. When you put yourself out there for the world to see, there will undoubtedly be people who will disagree with you. You’ll upset people, make them angry, and once you do, they’ll do their best to boo you off stage.

Don’t let them succeed in doing so. Let go of the idea that you can make everyone happy, and focus on making yourself happy. That is something you can control. It’s up to everybody else to decide whether or not they want to be happy along with you.

If you've found this website helpful, please click the PayPal button. You will be helping me pursue my dream career as a writer. Thanks for your support!

37 Responses to “Accept That You Can’t Make Everyone Happy”

#1 TCM on 24, May, 2007 at 5:02 pm

It’s called “Misery loves company.” Anyone saying anything bad about your site is probably because they are jealous. I enjoy reading your posts, please keep up the good work!

#2 Shaun Boyd on 25, May, 2007 at 7:02 am

I’m happy to hear you enjoy the posts on LifeReboot. It’s encouraging readers like yourself that help inspire me to continue writing. Thanks so much for your comment.

#3 wira on 26, May, 2007 at 5:09 am

I guess they gave that nasty comments because they think they know better and can’t humble themselves enough. They can disagree, but some of the comments are just plain nasty (maybe belittling other people makes them feel good about themselves?).
Anyways, a lot of your posts encourage me enough not to give up my dreams.
Keep it up!

#4 Shaun Boyd on 26, May, 2007 at 9:23 am

I’m so glad to hear you feel that way — it’s important to follow through with your dreams, and I’m happy knowing my posts are encouraging you to.

#5 Morris on 26, May, 2007 at 12:18 pm

omg, Ive been quote-uh-nated~!

Anywho, I was one who lived their life in this manner. Now I cant stand seeing it. I have a friend that I hate to see is effected by this at times. It’s not that one has to become rude, but merely stand up and be heard…or at least make some sort of noise.

I guess it just comes back to what I said. Speak, be heard, anger others, stand up for others, win~
(I may have missed the topic a bit…sry)

#6 Shaun Boyd on 26, May, 2007 at 4:10 pm

You have indeed been “quote-uh-nated~!” Thanks for your thought-provoking comment, it inspired me to write this article.

#7 Helen on 28, May, 2007 at 12:48 am

How very sad their lives must be that they felt the need to bash your site. You ARE doing people good here. 🙂 And yourself, of course. Life is about learning, yes? Boy, are you learning. 😛

#8 Dav on 28, May, 2007 at 4:44 am

“This ‘computer guy’ isn’t talented or anything. How the hell can it take 5 hours to fix a computer. Spyware can be removed with hijackthis within 10 minutes. Prepared Windows installs can be done within 25 minutes and hardware diagnosing ain’t rocket science either”.

Now here’s a guy who has never been a
pro in his life.

I’ll take him onsite and have him crying within hours.

#9 Shaun Boyd on 28, May, 2007 at 7:29 am

I’ll second what TCM said: “Misery loves company.” Some people get their kicks making other people feel miserable — that’s probably why they bashed my site, because they get some enjoyment out of belittling a stranger.

#10 Shaun Boyd on 28, May, 2007 at 7:47 am

I agree wholeheartedly — that comment was made by someone very ignorant to the life of a professional computer consultant. I remember 10 hour days resulting from tape backup software corrupting a Windows Small Business Server installation. I remember the painstakingly long process of migrating company data from a Novell share to an NTFS partition. He can say whatever he wants about 10 or 25 minute processes, because he must imagine “fixing computers” never involves a network of them, and that backing up critical data before laying hands on someone’s machine is optional. I worked on computers long enough to realize that it’s a never ending cycle of being a slave to the machine — that’s why I’ve changed my strategy, and I’ve begun making computers work for me. I’m working smarter, not harder.

#11 Chris on 01, Jun, 2007 at 3:10 pm

I believe that the key to having an enjoyable life is not found only in avoiding or ignoring bad situations. Rather, I think it is in being able to let go of the hurtful and unconstructive comments and attitudes that we all receive. If doing this doesn’t make you happy, then considering a complete lifestyle change is one of the few viable alternatives. Having the courage to both let go of bad comments and make a major life change is a credit to you Mr. Boyd. The world needs more positive outlooks, as well as people who remind others how to form them.

#12 Shaun Boyd on 01, Jun, 2007 at 6:02 pm

You’re a kind person to leave such a supportive comment. It’s supportive readers like yourself that help encourage me to continue writing. I really appreciate it — thank you again. 😀

#13 David Bradey on 06, Jun, 2007 at 11:38 pm

Just remember people feel the need to put others down to make themselves feel more important/smart/fill in the blank. I love when people start whining and complain about someone else’s ‘whining’. Irony is not lost or hard to come by. I am still in the computer indusrty and everyone will have a different experiances. I have worked plenty of thankless jobs and I feel it is helpful to compain about them. This is what makes a person want to strive for more.

Make yourself happy and do whatever it is that will make you smile when you reflect on the day’s events.

#14 Shaun Boyd on 07, Jun, 2007 at 9:26 am

@David Bradey
Good point on the irony in whining about someone else’s whining — I never thought about that. Regarding your method for striving for more, although I can understand your reasoning for complaining about thankless jobs, I can’t see how it truly helps. Complaining typically resolves nothing, and in most cases it just serves to irritate people around you. Consequently, complaining is a very selfish act. If there’s something unfair going on in your workplace, complaining to your co-workers might seem therapeutic, but it’s really the management that should hear the complaints, right? Thanks for your comment.

#15 sean on 23, Jul, 2007 at 1:11 am

dude, everything you write is so true. i’m a fan

#16 rajesh on 25, Jul, 2007 at 8:30 am

hey dude.. thats so true… im gonna read ur blog hereafter…

#17 Rhonda on 24, Oct, 2007 at 6:15 am

This was an interesting read. Thank you for sharing the comments,they really brought your point home. Perhaps the understanding that the approval of others is fleeting comes with maturity?

#18 somyang on 06, Dec, 2007 at 1:53 am

hey dude…
you are on the right track extending help to a people here……..
gr8 job dude…….

#19 somyang on 06, Dec, 2007 at 1:54 am

i must say that i really love to get glued to your site for all day despiting all my works,,,,,and i mean it bro,.,,,,,,,,,

great job bro

#20 Jean on 06, Dec, 2007 at 9:18 am

Thank You Shaun. I was desperate & down in the workplace. I googled “you can make some people happy” looking for an old quote from my Dad. Your site came up. I’ll read it at least once a day. Thanks for being there or here! Made my day.

#21 Binoj on 17, Jun, 2008 at 5:54 am

hai man, this is so true. . . goona read ahead. . me too is a computer guy .. those guys who made kinda comments didnt know the risk n pain out there as a “computer guy” when one is supposed to keep the entire critical stuff of a company

great work bro…

#22 Alex on 14, Sep, 2008 at 1:13 pm

Hey, there’s a lot in what you’ve said ! I didn’t realize that but now I think I do. I’ve been all wrapped up in worrying about what others will say about me or my actions/ideas. Now I think I will put my back into doing my own thing and will try not to give much thought to what people around me will say. After all, you can’t make them all like you !!!

#23 AJ Kumar on 19, Jan, 2009 at 4:09 am

so true, i have a hard time getting through to people about this.

AJ Kumar

#24 Jas on 19, Jan, 2009 at 7:22 pm

areee, you 100% sure its impossible to make everyone happy :P?

i mean reallllly, 100%? nice topic

#25 Rhea on 03, Jan, 2010 at 10:40 pm

So true.

I’m a first time reader, but definitely not going to be a one time reader. I loved reading this. I always have issues with caring what other people think. (I’m a person who wants to make everyone happy, all the time.)

Hard to accept that I can’t do it.

#26 Angela on 03, Jan, 2010 at 10:48 pm

Love it. Especially the tards that READ your blog and then talk crap about how lazy you are and to get a real job….LOL. And what is a ‘real job’? Where you work for someone else, and rely on them to pay you? Anyone blog savvy knows how much time and hard work it takes to run a blog. Maybe the unemployed dude should look into creating his own blog and make some money for his family….instead of posting rude comments!
I am a new reader. I stumbled upon your site. Most blogs are lame, yours rocks. Actual good and useful stuff. 🙂

#27 Simon on 01, Feb, 2010 at 3:24 am

Hi ya, just passing through i think your site could only be a good thing if it makes others happy, just one issue, It would be nice if you were up front with others by sharing your continuing stuggles as clearly as your victories as not all individuals can clearly see what comments 9 and 10 are all about, “we must practice what we preach”. It seems clear to me that the opinions of this individual have clearly upset you and if you truely respected the fact that you can’t make everyone happy you would not feel the need to justify yourself or belittle him.
I hope you take no offence to my comment, I am by no means perfect myself, I procastinate, have a multitude of bad habits, dream more than i act, don’t make friends very easily but i do long for them and worst of all I also get hung up on what others think of me too, Thanks for giving me the oppertunity to vent it kinda felt good.

#28 Mr. Muscles on 14, Mar, 2010 at 5:07 pm

the quotes were obviously written by pessimistic uneducated individuals
I really enjoy your articles, Mr. Boyd.
Thank you so much for sharing. I am 18 yrs old who is in search for wisdom, haha

why dont you write for too. Im sure you’d blend in well with the other great writers.

#29 Eagle on 13, Apr, 2010 at 10:35 am

Go you. I admire you for following your dreams. If only everyone could look within themselves rather then trying to bring others down. I think all I can say is you have to wonder why people need to be so negative about things. Sure, say you disagree, put your point across but when people are SO agro, all I can think is that maybe it touched a nerve and they are lashing out big time. Now why on EARTH would people do that? (catching my sarcasm here? It’s a little hard to pick up on blogs but I somehow feel it came across 😉
oh and, I disagree about you have to be completely open or share your victories and your downfalls. I believe a blog should be only about what you want. YOUR blog. Whatever that is. I think that’s why ultimately it doesn’t matter what other people say.
I don’t think he was justifying himself (and therefore proving he does care). I think he was further proving his original point? That you can’t please everyone. Which everyone who didn’t approve so politely pointed out and therefore strengthened the argument. Ironic no?
xo Peace and love

#30 Clint Cora on 02, May, 2010 at 11:23 am

This is so true whether in personal life or business. No person can make everyone happy so the strategy is to target who you want to make happy, whether it’s certain people in your social circle or certain types of customers, and cater to them well. They are the only ones that matter the most.

#31 Mark on 13, Sep, 2010 at 10:28 pm

All your posts are so true. I am a huge fan of LifeReboot. I’d badmouth those people insulting you, but that wouldn’t get either of us very far, would it? 😛

Again, I’m a big fan. Keep up the good writing.

#32 Casey on 16, Sep, 2010 at 4:14 pm

just found this blog, and i’ve really enjoyed reading through it. sounds like you’re waking up.

but while you certainly don’t deserve to be ridiculed, i have to wonder what kind of life reboot is actually going on. correct me if i’m wrong, but so far it looks like you have taken zero risks. if “realizing your dream, and making changes in your life to pursue it” means skipping the season finale of Lost, so that you could create an online journal, then sure, you have succeeded. but it looks like you are continuing to work your day job, while pursuing your hobby at night, right? what are you waiting for, someone to hand you a writing job with a full benefits package and a 401k that happens to exist in the midwest so you don’t have to leave your comfy relationship? things don’t work that way.

while I admire your spirit, I have to admit, I bristled when you referred to yourself as an “artist.” I am the same age as you and I live in Hollywood, a town of artists and dreamers. sadly, only 8% of my peers will be able to earn a living doing what they love. that’s how stiff the competition is. many of these people left comfortable towns and relationships to live in near poverty, while pursuing their dream. they are often the black sheep of their families, and rarely find mates that understand them. unemployment is the norm, with or without recession.

i’m not saying that you have to be like this, i just want to give you a taste of what the real deal is. most of these people didn’t become artists, they were born that way with little choice in the matter. you yourself express doubt because some of the topics and characters you’re writing about exceed your life experience. why not drastically change your life and remove the safety net, so you have something interesting to reflect? aren’t you sick of being Shaun Boyd, the Golden Boy?

sorry dude, you can’t have your nice, safe IT life AND a the life of an artist. it just doesn’t work that way. deciding that you are unhappy is merely the start– where’s your follow through?

#33 venkat on 17, Jan, 2011 at 9:08 am

wish had some money to donate[:(]

#34 Jerry on 06, Feb, 2011 at 9:31 am

I read a quote somewhere that keeps me focused on this topic. “What other people think of you is none of your business.”

Now, I’m not sure I totally agree with that, because I do care what the people I love think of me, that’s important to me. But for the most part, this quote reminds me that the person leaving a cutting remark on my blog is doing what he or she needs to be happy. My happiness doesn’t depend on others liking me.

#35 ashley on 11, Sep, 2011 at 3:28 am

oh my god !! i m really feeling good after reading your articles..i accidently came up by this and and it is really amazing .!!! seriously i wll be implememnting some points today itself wich i know i should implement but somewhere somehow something pulls me to do so !!!

great work :]

#36 Tim on 19, Jan, 2012 at 12:53 am

I don’t know how I ended up here but it all reminded me of a quote.

“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” -Dr.Suess

#37 Stephy on 20, May, 2012 at 4:57 am

I’ve been the whole morning in front of the computer, reading your blog! well, I’m amazed. Great job! You write things that we all know but we refuse to accept ! and that’s cool because I have to admit that I never thought that I’ll found a blog about my… thoughts.
You made me happy, you made my day and in a good way you changed my life. I’ll take care with what I do, with my dreams, everything!
Thank you!!

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