“To escape critisicsm, do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.”
— Elbert Hubbard
It’s never easy to hear someone tell you you are doing something wrong, especially for someone like me. I am one of those people who strives for perfection in everything I do, which I admit, can be considered both a strength and a weakness. I take a lot of pride in my work and my reputation, and sometimes it’s tough to hear what other people have to say. But the truth is, the only way to truly achieve your full potential is to accept constructive criticism as an opportunity to better yourself.
Be aware, constructive criticism and just criticism differ in the intentions of the person giving it, but both can be used as a way to reevaluate yourself and consider what needs to change to make a better You. Here is how to turn constructive criticism into a productive, self-improvement opportunity:
Don’t take it personally
This is easier said than done, but if you take constructive criticism as a personal blow, you will never be able to view it as a means to better yourself. The people who give you true constructive criticism do so because they want to see you succeed. Resentment and resistance are the byproducts of denial. No one is perfect; everyone can improve in some way, and it usually takes someone else to point out where.
After you know the What, consider the How
After you’ve accepted that there is something you need to work on, think about how you are actually going to make it happen. Ask the person who pointed it out for their advice. Turn to people who know you really well, and see what they have to say too. Most importantly, ask yourself.
Keep it coming
Don’t think that once you’ve improved something, you are done. There is always room for improvement. Ask for feedback often, and constantly strive to make it productive for yourself.
What you have to remember is that life can be an enlightening journey of self improvement, or a dull dead-end of stagnancy and complacency. Make constructive criticism work for you.
To a happy, healthy, productive life!