Monday, March 7, 2011

Go Ahead, Criticize Me

Did you just criticize me? [Pic]
Have you ever regretted asking someone "What do you think?"

Such a question is meant to invite comments but very often you are not prepared for what you are about to hear. We like to know the truth and get an honest opinion of ourselves. Yet, we are afraid to take criticism. The fear usually gets the better of us and we rather forgo the truth.

Most of us deal with criticism in a defensive way. Sometimes, we may even lash at the person who did nothing wrong other than telling the truth. In doing so, we are missing out something really big.

Criticism, when taken in the right light, can open up a brand new perspective. It is never easy on our ears but it is almost always useful. The thing we really need to learn is 'how to accept criticism with grace and appreciation'.

Sugarcoated words are not
necessarily useful. [

Here are some of my thoughts:

8. Get the idea right

The first thing you need to do is to convince yourself that criticism is a good thing. Our minds are often trained to resist bad things. You would need to undo that. Once you get this right, you will find yourself soliciting for more criticisms and thus benefiting greatly from them.

Sugarcoated words are not necessarily useful.

7. Kick the habits

Just like any other behaviors, the way we take criticism depends on our habits. Check and reflect on how you would normally react towards criticism. Do you interrupt? Do you raise your voice? Do you sneer? 

Kick those bad habits.

Criticism does not have to be painful. [Pic]

6. Don't take criticism personally

It hurts to hear bad things being said about you and no one enjoys that. However, if you learn to detach, you feel less awful. Just imagine that the critic is giving his opinion about someone else and ask yourself what the criticized person can do to avoid those comments.

Criticism does not have to be painful.

5. Get the real meaning behind those words

It is common to feel upset (sometimes for days) upon receiving criticism. That is because you allow the words to replay in your head and give them an emotional response. Instead, focus on the true meaning of the criticism and ask yourself questions such as "What is the one thing I can learn from that comment?" In that way, you will pay more attention to what you can do rather than how you should feel.

Be logical, not emotional.

You can always find the positive in criticism. [Pic]

4. Negate the Negatives

You can find the positive in criticism. You always can. Rewrite any negative sentences and they will all sound positive. For example, you can turn "You always state the obvious as if I am a moron!" into "I need to improve the way I explain so that he understands the significance of what I have to share."

The usefulness of criticism depends on how you look at it.

3. You are not always right

Our pride can kill. We can be so defensive of our rightness that we are dead convinced that the critic is making a big mistake. In accepting criticism, you do not have to swallow all your pride and feel insignificant. All you have to do is ask yourself questions such as "What could have been the one thing that I might be wrong about?". Such a question can help you slowly re-examine your own flaws without losing your confidence.

Self-doubt does have its side-effects too.

View criticism as opportunities to learn. [Pic]

2. Learn to filter

Criticisms are often bundled with harsh and rude words. These are the words that hurt the most but help the least. You would have to learn to filter them. For example, you can filter "You are such an idiot! Why can't you just get the project going?" into "Why can't you just get the project going?". After that, negate the negatives and rephrase it as "I have to find more effective ways to manage the project."

Don't let unhelpful words reduce the goodness of criticism.

1. Say 'thank you'

It sounds odd but this can help you accept criticism. After what might seem like a nasty round of belittling, thank the critic. Very often, your unexpected behavior can help to soften his approach and make him more objective. After criticizing how awful your writing has been, he might just add on by saying "Actually, you have great substance. You just have to polish your language."

Your act of appreciation can be humbling, for you and the critic.

Criticism is like dark chocolate. Once you get used
to its bitterness, it can actually taste good. [

Finally, a quick recap...

Criticism is good stuff when taken constructively. Let it help you discover yourself and create some room for improvement. Stay positive and accept criticism with grace and appreciation. Stay on top of things, focus on the 'do' and not the 'feel'.

When it comes to criticism, let your brain rule, not your heart.

"Criticism is something we can avoid easily by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing" ~Aristotle~

Stumble Upon Toolbar

1 comment:

Lovequotes said...

I like the way you explained about “Go Ahead, Criticize Me.” I think you’ve made some truly interesting points. Not too many people would actually think about this the way you just did. Thanks and regards...