This weekend I came across the word “criticism” at least 20 times in all literally. I’m not sure whether it was sign from God himself, or whether it was just coincidences, but I figured this would be a great blog topic for today.
*Photography Provided By Death To Stock*
Well, first things first, let us look at the definition of what criticism is:
Criticism [krit–uh-siz-uh m] –
Growing up, I had this problem of criticizing myself too much. I would put myself down more than anyone else due to lack of confidence. My way of covering it up ironically was me being tougher on myself more than anyone else. I would hold myself to way more higher standards than what was needed. Most of the time it came harder when I failed at something, especially during school. I was that straight A student, so when I got maybe a B and even worse a C on a test or an assignment, it would hurt more than most. I would begin to judge myself as being a failure just because I didn’t get the grade I thought that I deserved over all. It didn’t hit me that this was a problem I was causing for myself until I reached my first year of college and realized that the more harder I was being on myself, the more I was failing at what I wanted to do. I figured out on my own that I am not perfect. I can strive to be perfect in every aspect but it will never happen. I was chasing something that didn’t exist instead of realizing who I was at the moment and being alright with that.
I never had a problem with others criticizing me and my actions until this year. This has been one of the worst years I have had when it comes to dealing with other’s opinions of myself, my business, my artwork, my way of doing my artwork, and just my life as a whole. Some have been from strangers and others have been from those around me, not all but some. I have often felt like I was not good enough, like what I was doing never mattered because that was what I was being told…constantly. It hit me hard when I happen to literally walk up on a whole table of people having a full blown discussion about me. It took me by surprise because, I’m like why am I the topic of discussion all of sudden out of all people? What had little ole me done to even be the center of attention among a group of people I barely even knew. I overheard some say well, “she’s not professional and her work sucks, I have seen better” and of course some other degrading things and names that I can’t even include in this post because of how bad they are, and hit home …..hard. It hit home hard because that is all I have ever pursued to be for my business is professional in every way that I could and can be. Don’t get me wrong in the beginning and when I first started DE back in December of 2010, 7 years ago, I had to learn how to be professional with the help of close friends and my family just like any other new business owner. So it was very surprising to hear this now, 7 years later, at the peak of my career as a female business owner and entrepreneur. What even hurt worse was the criticism I was indirectly receiving about my work. I appreciate those who are upfront with me about my design work in whether they like it or not. What I don’t appreciate is someone telling me and actually using my design work as though it is something that they love and are satisfied with but deep down they hate it. You can tell me upfront if it is ugly or not up to par, but it makes no sense to put on an act like everything is good when it truly is not to you at the end of the day. Till this day, that particular group of people doesn’t even know that I was literally listening in to their entire conversation the entire time. Literally standing right behind them and they were too busy grilling me and going in that they never even noticed me nor saw me that day, and of course I never brought it up. Being the professional I know I am truly am, I just went on about my life like I normally do and still continue to show them respect every chance I get with no emotion nor negativity shown back in response.
What made me think about this topic as something to discuss on the site today is the words I heard yesterday during Sunday service in which the pastor stated, “These people are going to criticize you forever. They’ll come to your funeral and criticize the casket you are laying in while dead, and you didn’t even pick the casket out yourself.” That statement alone just shook the table for me on a spiritual level. He was so right as well. It does not matter what you do whether it be good or bad, people are going to criticize you regardless. You could be living right and doing right by people your entire life and someone is always going to either point out a flaw of yours or even create flaws that aren’t even there for you but it doesn’t mean for you to stop being the best you can be. Gina Horkey from our affiliate Horkey Handbook asked a valuable question a while back, “Are you going to listen to the 1 or the 100? If 100 people are telling you you’re doing something right and just ONE isn’t in agreement, where do you think the problem really lies?” Those 100 in agreement would beat out that 1 person in disagreement right? This applies to yourself as well. If you are the only person in disagreement with what you’re doing right, and 100 other people are in agreement with your actions and ways of doing things as a person, then you need to check yourself. You may be your own problem an downfall overall. Sometimes criticism from others, and even yourself, are not valid facts about you as a person. This is where your own mindset comes in play and how you perceive things and not what is really reality. Gina Horkey has provided some tips on how to do better with criticism:
- Consider The Source: Does the person who is giving this criticism even know you? If no, then why listen to them? They don’t even know you well enough to even factor in an opinion about you and what you’re doing. Do you even know yourself when you are criticizing yourself? If no, then you are the problem and not anyone else, you have to truly know yourself before giving a valid opinion on yourself. Is there advice valid enough to even pertain to yourself? If no, again if it is not valid enough to pertain to you, then what they think and even say never has and never will matter.
- Assess Accuracy: Is what the people are criticizing you for even true? If no, then disregard the comments and gestures of negativity. False information should never be entertained, not even for one second of your life.
- Are They in the Majority or the Minority: Is what those are criticizing you for something that you have heard on multiple occasions? If no, then again what they are saying is invalid. Remember that 100 will always beat out that 1. Is their criticism something new for you and does it go against many other viewpoints about you and your situations in life? If yes, then take it into consideration but don’t ponder over it. Use it as constructive criticism to better yourself. Take it as just friendly advice.
I say all of this to say to you, keep going. If you’re receiving criticism for your choices in life use it as fuel towards your fire to be better. Great things are coming for you no matter what others may think and feel about you. Much love and I hope you all have a wonderful Monday and start for your new week!