Business Tip of the Week- Being negative ain't so bad ya'll

It's been a rough time in Etsyville™ lately. We're all feeling a bit winded I think. And for those of you fighting the good fight on issues you care deeply about, or for those who wonder why they bother- this one's for you.

Being negative ain't all that bad ya'll. Do people call protestors 'negative nancys' or those who speak up against corruption 'whiners'? Nope. Well they may, but they don't get much press. Maybe in some weird fringe newsletters but not in the big publications.

But I digress.

Being critical is the basis for all scientific thought. Having worked in research for many years I can tell you that I never once heard a co-worker say, 'I love the lab.' In fact, most of us hated the lab. It was big, cold, the acoustics were awful and it regularly smelled like burnt agar and rat guts. So why did we go there everyday? We loved our work. We loved that we were discovering new things which one day, maybe just one day would save some bastard we didn't even know. Yes, even you. But we were still "negative" and constantly complained about our facility, were critical about our data, and showed up every day and night trying to make things better.

You had the guy who clipped his toenails in the lunchroom sink. You had the other guy who would bleach his glassware and get it all over the counter, which you'd always lean up against when you coincidentally weren't wearing your lab coat. Then there was that visiting scientist who would tell you how cluttered the lab was and how her home lab back in East Bumblefuck was so much better. And my favorite, the safety techs who wouldn't get that you had to put radioactive tape on your pens just so people would stop stealing them. They didn't see the humor or the necessity of your actions.

Etsy is like that too. To many of us, this place is just a lab. It's a place where we get to do our work. But we don't love it. It has things like bleach everywhere (treasuries on your profile). It has the guy who leaves the toenails in the sink (resellers) and it has the people who always say it's better somewhere else (AF promos). We even have the safety techs who don't get humor or necessity (the ones who report my threads so they get moved to Etc). We stay though because we love our work and this is a place to get it in front of people. Just like we stayed at the lab with its radiation, rat guts and arrogant researchers- it was where the funding and space was to do our work. 

And we liked the people we worked with. Why? Because they helped us improve. They helped us ask the the guy who clipped his toenails in the sink to kindly refrain rather than puking all over him in a show of defiance. The Etsy community is like that. I have had many kind souls talk me down from puking all over admin's desks to relieve frustration. You know who you are and I thank you. 

Bottom line is give the negative, critical people a break. And if you are one, don't beat yourself up. One can't exist without the other. If everyone were positive all the time you'd end up in a giant pool of positive goo. I imagine it to be like that stuff the bodies were submerged in during 'The Matrix'. And if everyone were negative well, it would be a universe full of Simon Cowells. And he's a multi millionaire who dates a string of gorgeous women, and has his every whim catered to. Who wants a life like that?

So good luck to all of you who are positive. In some ways I envy you because I'm sure you have a lot less stress. You see the cup as half full whereas I see that someone's just slipped the date rape drug into your drink. We all must exist together though and maybe one day one of us negative nancys will save your life. Or at least give you some advice and a supportive ear when your shop gets unexpectedly shut down. It's just business though, right?

Thread on Etsy forum

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