It’s been said that if you’re not receiving criticism, then you’re not really trying very hard. Criticism will come in different forms and from various directions. There are two ways to handle criticism: you can let it distract you or you deal with it and move on. Let’s take a look at how to deal with criticism in a positive way.
Take a deep breath and alter your perspective.
We know that’s it’s very easy to get defensive and to automatically feel like you’re being attacked when faced with criticism. If you adjust your outlook when receiving this negative feedback, it will be easier to hear what the person is actually saying.
Step Two: Take time to evaluate and judge the criticism.
If you’re in the middle of a project or job that requires your full attention, you will want to develop the ability to set the criticism and how you react to it aside until you’re able to think clearly about it and without much feeling. When you are able to give the criticism space in your thoughts, make an effort to divide your emotional reaction from your logical one. Often times, criticism does have validity. Certainly no one is perfect and even if you’re think you’re close, I’m sure there’s probably room for improvement.
Step Three: Be aware of your thoughts.
For the most part, we are great as emotional beings at letting our thoughts takeover. After you receive criticism, it’s very easy to become affected by negative emotions. We may feel angry with the person criticizing us and disappointed that our efforts weren’t received better. Our self-esteem can take a hit and we may even feel as if our goals and dreams are never going to be reached.
Being the emotional beings we are, we also have control over our thoughts. The main thing is to become conscious of them first, acknowledge the thoughts you’re having and change them. You can decide to put your attention on the positive. Decide that yes your dreams and goals are worth achieving and when you receive that criticism, don’t let it devastate your day. I wouldn’t even let it ruin the moment.
Lastly, take that criticism and place it where it belongs.
If there is some truth to it, find out what it is that needs improving. If there is some doubt about the validity of the criticism, then by all means, get a second or third opinion. Do this only if the criticism is important. If it is way off base, toss it in the garbage along with the rest of the trash and move on.
When you receive criticism, it means you’re taking some sort of action. You’re doing something bold, beneficial, and challenging. Good for you, that’s always a good thing!