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Criticism


Someone asked me recently if I had any advice for dealing with criticism. I pointed out that the price we pay for saying or doing anything that matters...is exposure to criticism. Here are twenty suggestions I shared. Perhaps they'll be helpful to someone.

1. Expect criticism, especially in today's culture. People have a heightened sense of critique about everything.

2. Don't react in the moment. Give it some time. Especially, don't react when you're tired.

3. Honest disagreement is okay, even necessary sometimes, but be civil.

4. Learn from any truth in the criticism that may be accurate.

5. Ask someone else to talk it through with you. Allow them to read the letter, email, etc. Sometimes fresh eyes bring perspective that we've missed.

6. Don't compare yourself with anyone, or accept others' attempts to compare you to someone else. Be you. Be the best version of you, you can be.

7. There are occasions when silence is the best response. Jesus modeled this.

8. Don't let it hold you hostage. Ask God to help you forgive and forget.

9. Pray for God's strength to endure criticism, and to prevent it in your own life.

10. Understand that some people aren't teachable. Don't expend your best energy trying to change them.

11. Realize that some people are just mean. Don't let them cause you to be mean.

12. Resist the temptation to respond to criticism on social media. Too many people can misunderstand you. It's a never-ending process.

13. Where possible, always seek to meet with a critic personally and privately.

14. Control what you can control. We can't control whether or not people will agree with us, or even like us. Concentrate on what we can control.

15. Always be kinder than is necessary. Anger is rarely productive. I've rarely been sorry for what I didn't say.

16. Seek first to understand, before seeking to be understood.

17. Don't give control of your emotions to people you don't respect.

18. Don't let people rent space in your brain.

19. When someone comes to you with second-hand information about something a critic said about you, say kind things about your critic. Some people love to gossip and talk. Give them good things to say.

20. Choose words carefully. They have the power of life or death.

Have a blessed day!


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Lexington, Kentucky
(Opinions expressed here are solely my own and do not reflect the views or opinions of my employer.)

©2019 by Gary is Thinking.