I find it sad that as soon as someone criticises us, we feel the need to retaliate. As a child, I didn’t notice it because I was too angry to care. But criticism is nothing more than another person’s observation of us and if there is an issue there we need to deal with it.
The problem we have with criticism, is that what others see is not normally how we think of ourselves. We see it as a slur on us, but that’s not what it is. It’s a slur on our behaviour, it’s our behaviour they’re struggling with.
In some cases, the people who see us in a different way are right, but because we’re in denial we don’t see what they see. We hate giving others the satisfaction of actually knowing us, but if it is family or friends they are usually well versed, in the same way we are well versed on them.
People will often tell us things in our best interests because they care, but we won’t see it that way. But if we are prepared to listen, another person’s viewpoint will always give us the opportunity to learn something about ourselves. When we’re too quick to defend ourselves, we will fail to learn.
It is usually only when we’ve calmed down and used that time to reflect that we know they’re right, but we’ll never admit to it. Agreeing or trying to see another person’s point of view will always defuse what could turn into a heated argument.
But what ‘accepting criticism’ does is give both parties the opportunity to remain calm and stay friends, particularly as what’s said is often given in good faith.