Like it or not, need it or not, in some point in your life you must face criticism, which nobody likes. To succeed in life, both personally and professionally, it’s important to take criticism in stride as valuable feedback and a learning opportunity.
Criticism is a term for judgment or evaluation, good or bad. There are two types of criticism—constructive and destructive criticism. Constructive criticism is a criticism that is not designed to point out your mistakes only, but also show you where and how you can improve. Destructive criticism, in the other hand, is just thoughtlessness things a person tells to you, and have tendency to be malicious and hurtful.
You can either use criticism in a positive way to improve, or in a negative way to lower your self-esteem and cause stress, anger, or even aggression. That is why, dealing with criticism positively is an important life skill we all need to master.
Here are some tips to respond criticism wisely, so we can use those criticisms as motivations for us to do better than yesterday:
Don’t take it personally
It is hard to not to take it personally when someone is criticizing. But when you’re receiving the critics, take a step back and see things from an objective place. Sometimes we react too quickly to what’s being told, and we don’t realize that it might be true, or otherwise.
Respond to the content of criticism, not the tone of it
We need to separate the criticism and the style of criticism. Not all people know how to tell the criticism without emotion. Even if people speak in a tone of anger, try to detach their emotion in the criticism. Try to listen only to the useful suggestions which in their words, and let go all of your personal feeling while receiving it.
It’s normal if criticism stresses us. But it is important to control ourselves and respond the criticism with a clear head.
Don’t be defensive
Hold down the urge to speak up and rebut all of the criticism. Listen carefully what they’re saying to you, let go of the unimportant points that have nothing to do with the thing being criticized. Respond the criticism with a clear mind, calm tone, and of course don’t forget to smile.
Realize that you can’t please everyone
No matter how hard we try, we will never be able to please everyone. Every single of us has a unique perspective, experiences, and the way we see how things should be. Don’t stress yourself to be a good person to every single person in your life because none of them has the same exact perspective or opinion with you.
Make sure you have supportive squads around you
Importance of relationship which can offer care, acceptance, additional feedback, perspective, and consolation plays serious role on how you move on from criticism, especially destructive one. You can seek advice and support from your surroundings, or simply just get shoulders to lean on.
Learn from criticism
Most criticism is made with reasons. It is probably based at least on some truths. Criticism may appear negative, but that is also the chance for us to learn and improve from their suggestions. If necessary, write down the things they pointed out in the criticism, and find the ways to fix and improve it.
Dealing with criticism will be easier if you have a good feeling about yourself. You will appreciate yourself more, and realize that criticism is the way people motivate you to improve and do better. It also can be a challenge, but the important point in dealing with criticism is that you always have opportunity to transform criticism from something negative to something positive. There is always a grain of positive thing in every bad things life throws to us.
“The final proof of greatness lies in being able to endure criticism without resentment.” – Elbert Hubbard