Who Do You Think You Are?=Handling Criticism

If you are like most people, receiving criticism from someone can cause a lot of tension. One of the most important things to keep in mind regarding criticism is this: Focus on the person making the criticism and not on yourself. Generally, we do just the opposite. Hee is an excerpt from a handout I received while attending a group therapy session: ” For example, you have to ask yourself if the person delivering the criticism is generally a critical and angry person. Is it possible that he/she was simply irritable that day and you happened to be the recipient of misplaced anger? Perhaps the critical person was having significant personal problems? Is this person generally unstable in the sense of suffering from moodiness or depression much of the time? Rather than simply accepting the criticism as valid and taking it to heart, looking at the source would be more appropriate. Have you ever said something with good intentions only to be snapped at or criticized in an angry fashion? Again, trying to look outward and evaluate the external source is the best way to get a clear understanding. Does this other person know you well enough to truly dislike you? Is it possible that you are a reminder of someone or something else in the past? It can be confusing when you want to clarify if there is some type of resentment towards you for what you have, such as your abilities, your possessions, even down to your body shape and appearance. If you find yourself criticized or find out that someone does not like you, ask yourself if it really matters. Does this person’s dislike of you actually cause damage in your life and how important will it be five years from now? Another thing that needs to be considered is whether or not you are hypersensitive to criticism. If so, understand that it is the easiest thing in the world to be critical of someone else. I also want to speak on this from another perspective. There may be times when you need to examine the content of the criticism to see if it is accurate. If so, then take the first step to acknowledge this and hold yourself accountable. Keep in mind that because another person is critical of you, it doesn’t mean that you cannot allow yourself permission to be imperfect. Refuse to accept global labels and overt insults! These are NEVER constructive. There is a way to deal with criticism by directly responding to the person delivering the critical remarks. Be aware that u should try not to be defensive and let emotions overrule your logic.” Remember that a behavior may have been criticized but not your core self so try not to take it so personal that it affects your self-esteem and worth. Know that the only guarantee in life is change and some things may not go as you plan all the time but it doesn’t change the essentials. “You is kind, You is smart, You is important”- The Helpwhite1