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How do you handle criticism?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

So I have had two people in the last 2 weeks, totally independently of eachother, give me the same criticism of my personality! The first time it made me stop and listen a little, but it was from someone I am a little at odds with so I didn't take it so closely. Then today I got the same criticism from a close family member whose opinion I value. So I said to myself- okay, this may be a part of my personality I have to look at and try to work on.

I feel pretty calm and accepting of it, knowing that problems arising can yield good change. I also feel a little sad about it- the poor me self pity thing, like- oh, I am so messed up I have this issue.

I am walking a pretty decent balance between those two responses- mostly trying to just use it as fuel to become even better of a person.

But I think criticism can be hard. I heard somewhere something about how one of the most important things anyone needs is to be appreciated- so I guess being criticized is the opposite of that and can sting some.

 

How do you handle it when you are criticized about something that may actually be a true criticism?

post #2 of 6

i guess it depends on the context in which the criticism was delivered. 

in a lot of ways, no one should be offering criticisms, unless you specifically ask for them. but that's in a perfect world.

i guess i would think about it for awhile and come to my own conclusion about the validity of the criticism. is it accurate? somewhat accurate? 

sometimes these can be growth opportunities. if it is such, then good for you.

but i would probably become less close to the persons who leveled such criticism. did they say why they were giving you this evaluation after all?

 

post #3 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snapdragon View Post

So I have had two people in the last 2 weeks, totally independently of eachother, give me the same criticism of my personality! The first time it made me stop and listen a little, but it was from someone I am a little at odds with so I didn't take it so closely. Then today I got the same criticism from a close family member whose opinion I value. So I said to myself- okay, this may be a part of my personality I have to look at and try to work on.

I feel pretty calm and accepting of it, knowing that problems arising can yield good change. I also feel a little sad about it- the poor me self pity thing, like- oh, I am so messed up I have this issue.

I am walking a pretty decent balance between those two responses- mostly trying to just use it as fuel to become even better of a person.

But I think criticism can be hard. I heard somewhere something about how one of the most important things anyone needs is to be appreciated- so I guess being criticized is the opposite of that and can sting some.

 

How do you handle it when you are criticized about something that may actually be a true criticism?



Poorly. And then my thoughts begin to collect about how if the person has that criticism of me, then there must be other things they dont like about me and because of all of these things I cant imagine why they would want to be in a relationship/ be friends with me. Its super unhealthy.

Ive been working on handling criticism for a long time, but it is really hard to hear bad things about yourself.
post #4 of 6

Depends on who it is coming from and context.  I don't view criticism as necessarily a negative thing.

 

If it is from my DH concerning my attitude or bad habits:  it bristles me but gives me pause to think.  DH has never said anything critical to me out of anger or meanness.  It is always said in the context where he knows I can do better for myself, I know deep down I can do better, and I try to look at it from his perspective.  I really do consider DH and I to be each others' life mentors and sometimes that comes with criticism.

 

If it comes from a superior or colleague at work concerning my work or attitude, it also gives me pause to think and forces me to reevaluate myself in terms of my quality of work and my interaction with others.  Much of what helps me overcome any insecurities regarding criticism at work is the realization that I will always be learning and that I respect the people I work with, as well as their professionalism and point of view.  Criticism done in the context of improving skills and quality is a good thing, in my opinion. 

 

If it comes from a random person on the subway (i.e. someone critically staring at a zit on my face) or when DD is having a random meltdown in public, I'm not so quick to view the criticism as positive.  Why?  Because strangers have no investment in the fine workings of my life and their criticism has no positive purpose.  It is merely to criticize or shame or hold in distain. 

post #5 of 6

When it comes to work related stuff, I get defensive, which usually means getting angry & coming up with ways that the person doesn't know what they're talking about. And then when I've had time to think & process, I can see if there really is some truth to what they're saying. In fact, I usually end up appreciating the feedback because it does help me grow. I've even been trying to think of some ways that I could invite some more constructive criticism that might help me be more effective at work...just not sure how to go about it.

 

When it comes to my partner, it's a lot harder. Being criticized often feels like not being loved or appreciated. Even if I can acknowledge that what she's saying is true, I have a hard time hearing it. I'm not sure how to work through that. Our relationship has been through a lot during the past 5 years, as we've dealt with infertility, and then with becoming parents (and the difficulty of my traumatic labor & delivery) without a ton of outside support. It feels like we have to focus on appreciation for each other, because the criticism just puts more stress on us. So I do try to remember that before I dole out any criticism...is it something that would really be constructive to share, or should I just keep it to myself & focus on something I can appreciate? I don't know if that's healthy or dysfunctional, but it's useful in terms of keeping our relationship together through a lot of stress.

post #6 of 6

Not well, not well at all.  However at home I learn to accept that it's fair for us all to relay a little criticism now and then.  If it happens at work the room usually clears, people run for the door and the idiot that opened his mouth get a plateful of STFU!  I didn't get to be Tech of the month by playing tetris on my computer and reading ultimate fighting articles! 

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