It's easy to judge others harshly when you don't stop to consider how they feel. Which is why anti-bullying experts advocate the importance of empathy.
Once you understand what someone else is going through, it usually makes it harder to heckle them.
(Remember when Toronto Mayor Rob Ford confessed that "being called fat, all that stuff, it bothers you"? Even some of his harshest critics admitted his weight should be off-limits.) So perhaps some of those in the anti-Anne Hathaway camp may change their tune when they realize just how much the Oscar-winning actress tried to make people like her.
According to Us Weekly magazine, Hathaway's acceptance speech on Sunday night for her role in the film Les Misérables was indeed rehearsed, as her detractors claimed. But the reason she practised the speech over and over again was not because she arrogantly assumed she would win. Rather, she did it to try to be more likeable, an unnamed source told the celebrity news magazine.
"She was very aware that she had been the butt of everyone's jokes," the source said.
As we pointed out on The Hot Button earlier this week, Hathaway has found herself in the unenviable position of being the most hated performer of this year's Oscars. Online commenters have not held back, skewering her for being overly dramatic, overeager and insincere.
But Us Weekly reports the actress admitted that she was hurt by all the negativity she has received.
"It does get to me," Hathaway said. "But you have to remember in life that there's a positive to every negative and a negative to every positive."
The magazine also notes that she agonized over what to wear on Oscar night, "working too hard" to decide on the perfect (and much-derided) gown until about three hours before appearing on the red carpet.
Poor Anne. Hasn't she heard that "haters gonna hate?" Trying to make others like you is a losing battle. And in Hathaway's case, it has only served to fuel the ridicule.
Still, knowing that she's well aware of how others perceive her may encourage her tormentors to tone down their mockery.
What would you do in Anne Hathaway's shoes?