DIY: HOW TO HANDLE CRITICISM


"Criticism is something you can easily avoid by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing" -Aristotle

And even then, I reckon they might criticize you for not doing a damn thing.

Hearing criticism from anyone that is invited or not doesn't ever really feel awesome.
Ever. Criticism often targets the cracks that are buried in our core that even WE don't like to acknowledge, much less let someone else talk about. It's no secret that no matter what you do, or where you go there will be people handing you handfuls of opinions. "Hate mail" comes in all forms, a look, a comment, a letter, a snide comment. We wish it wouldn't happen, but this is no utopian society. Lets get real for a second.

How do we navigate these pointed jabs without falling apart? I offer you 5 suggestions:

Respond, don't react. Give the feedback a minute of thought, if you can. Breathe. Walk away, close the computer, hang up the phone politely. Give it some time so that your knee jerk reaction isn't the thing you communicate to the other person. You'll be really grateful you did later on. I promise.

You can also "question the source". When people lash out in anger it is 110% of the time out of fear. It's proven science. Fear of being excluded, fear of not being good enough, fear of being trampled. In the end it's a lack of some form of self esteem. People who are completely comfortable and in love with themselves don't fly off the handle. They just don't. Ever. Try empathy instead of anger.

It's okay to be right. It's also okay to be wrong. There is no shame in either. Stick to your guns if you believe in it. Let it go and don't label yourself a quitter if you change your mind. Your life, your decision... fo shizzle.

Don't take compliments personally either. Miguel Ruiz, the author of "The Four Agreements" talks about how everything said to us is through other peoples glasses and perspective. Its all relative and really doesn't pertain to us personally in the end. He even says that compliments are directly from their reality and not to base our importance on them. They are nice of course, just don't hinge your worth on other peoples judgements. Good or bad. Come up with your own opinion of yourself. Decide that it's what you believe.

 Expect it, and have a plan. "You're calling out the popular girl in school. People are going to feel threatened." My Him said this to me a little while ago and I knew that changing the theme of this blog would create contoversy. Harsh comments still make my heart stop, and my instant reflex is fiery but I follow my own advice and try and gain some perspective. Its good to have a plan for when this happens if you're susceptible to shame. I like to process my feeling aloud to someone supportive (social networking is important when someone shuts you down... not like Facebook necessarily. Like, the 3 dimensional social networking:)) and then pet my kittens or make something creative. "Coping mechanisms" I think they are called;)

Have a solid core. This is most crucial and the hardest goal of all time. The day someone is able to internalize that they are not the sum of everyone else's opinion is the day their life changes forever. Therapists talk about how being treated like an outcast feels so scary to some its akin to "death".  The only way I have found to overcome this is to dig down inside of myself and know that I am a good person. Really good, and I help people change their lives on a daily basis. I also halfta have faith that for every person that hates my guts there will be another person who thinks of me as a superhero. AND when there is no one, I have myself. And that has to be enough.

My mom always said, "You can't please 100% of the people 100% of the time", and I've started to learn that my Momma is one smart lady.

Haters gonna hate, and if you find yourself hating back don't apologize. Just realize that there is something hidden in that anger that you can learn about yourself. Turn it into a progressive learning moment and don't look back.

And the most important advice: love yourself.

xoxox

4 comments

  1. Wow! LOVE these ideas. You are one smart aldy. I liked what you said about not basing your selfesteem on insults OR compliments. It's all about what we think of ourselves. And yah, everybody is going to get criticism. Just the other day I was looking up one of my fave bloggers online and could NOT believe how much crap on the internet there was about her when I absolutely adore her.

    Do you have a way to follow you via GFC?

    new follower :)
    bonnie
    bonnielouisa.blogspot.com

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  2. Awesome topic! It's never easy to hear (or read) about what someone has to say. And it's true that its just their perception.

    xo,
    Eeka

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  3. Thanks for this one. Even when you know about it and you think about it, it's always nice to have a reminder about how to handle things.

    Oh, and you'll always be an awesome super heroine to me ;D

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  4. I just published my first book. Since my plan to become a millionaire by inventing parental control software for writers might be a bit far-fetched, I think I'll just keep this list in mind, instead. ;D Thanks. <3

    P.S. -- I LOVE your style and you totally rocked that bikini!

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