In my experience, when someone hears the word criticism, they tend to view it as a negative action. When in reality, the act of criticism, can be the analysis and judgment of the merits and faults of something. This means that criticism doesn’t have to be viewed as something that is solely negative. Criticizing someone can involve analyzing or judging a merit, which recognizes something worthy and deserves praise or reward.
So why do people think that criticism always has to be negative? Don’t get me wrong, criticism can be negative, it can be mean and nasty, but in my opinion, that is not criticism; that is more along the lines of demeaning, degrading, or humiliating. Regardless of how someone tries to criticize you, or whether it was warranted, what they actually say is out of our control. To be honest, we can only control how we act and react to someone’s’ criticism.
Instead of reacting, take a step back and hit the pause button. Try to fully understand where the person is coming from and listen to what they are saying. If we choose to act in a close-minded manner, we may stop negative criticism from reaching us, BUT at the same time, we may miss an important message within that criticism. Therefore, try to maintain an open-mind because you don’t want to miss the message; you don’t want to leave before the miracle, in a sense. That way you can decide whether this criticism, feedback, or advice is something that doesn’t serve you or something that you can use to grow and evolve. The onus is on you to decide; just remember to be mindful, be aware, and be conscious when those situations arise.