Criticism, like rain, should be gentle enough to nourish a man’s growth without destroying his roots.
~Frank A. Clark
Every single person in the world has encountered criticism. There is absolutely no way to run away from it. You think you did a great job at something? Awesome, but there will always be someone who will find something wrong in it. That’s just how it is.
There are two types of criticisms – the constructive ones and well, the hateful, destructive ones. The important thing to remember is that you should not let either of them get to your heart. Here are a few steps to follow and understand if you have been subjected to criticism and you’re wondering how to cope with it.
1. Figure out if the comment is constructive criticism or not.
Is it a valuable comment? Feedback? Helpful opinion? Or are they just judging you?
For example, a few months ago, I received a tweet from someone who doesn’t follow me, which said “your writing sucks.” Firstly, did it give me any insight as to what I should do to improve my writing? Any specific advice? No. Secondly, I couldn’t even be sure that he has actually read any of my writing. Twitter usually gives anonymous keyboard warriors a lot of guts, so I decided that the comment was hateful and I let it go. It didn’t affect me.
2. If you get a constructive critique, what should you do?
The answer is simple, think about it and implement it, only if you feel like it can help you grow and improve whatever you’re doing and working on. A constructive comment and point of view will actually make you think, not put you down. Sometimes, random helpful comments can help to lift your work to another level. Take it positively.
3. Don’t let bad comments get to you.
Remember one thing, we cannot control people’s mouths, they will say whatever they want. What we CAN control is how we take those comments. Words are powerful, but build your skin so thick, that nobody can affect you with mere words. In Taylor Swift’s words, just shake it off. 🙂
4. Keep an open mind
When you’ve developed thick skin, start asking others for ideas. Always be open to input and opinions. You and your work are not perfect, accept that. Only then will you grow and succeed. You never know, one idea from someone could spark more amazing things in your brain.
Basically, as the famous quote says, “Don’t let compliments get to your head, and don’t let criticism get to your heart.” Don’t let anyone tell you that you don’t deserve something. Good luck!
Image credit Stuart Miles from freedigitalphotos.net