Without question, there is not one person that appreciates getting negative comments on what they did to handle a situation, a task, relationship, projects to how they look, or possibly what they can do with their abilities or education. Let’s be honest, criticism hurts our vulnerable self-image even though we may put up a good front pretending that nothing as mere words could bother us. However, negative comments can also serve to empower us if we only learn to turn them in the correct way.
Dwelling on the negative comments can only cause pain, worry, fear, or anger that is crippling the longer that you let them linger in your system. On the other hand, have you ever wondered the reason that you might have brought up such a strong reaction? Once you calm down, you might try to see yourself through that person’s eyes. Sometimes, looking inward can be a gift. You may find the negative comments had some actual merit that could help you change.
Let’s face it. We all think that we are perfect. No one is brave enough to say that, but it is human nature. Negative comments can also be constructive and help us grow into becoming a better employee, a friend, a lover, a daughter, a son, a wife, a husband, etc. While negative comments can be beneficial, they also should be taken at face value, depending on who and how often they are given.
The reason that not all negative comments can empower us is because there also could be a motive behind them if coming too frequently from the same person harping on that one thing. For instance, you may be a stay-at-home mom that wants to go back to school for a few night classes, which would require your husband to watch the children a few nights a week. Though he may not come out and say it, your husband may complain about paying the tuition. Even though you show him how the two of you could afford it, he still criticizes what a waste of money it would be. He further comments about the profession and the lack of jobs in that field. However, the real truth may be that this husband just doesn’t want to babysit and give up his free nights bowling with friends.
Another prime example may be a “friend” that constantly likes to compare your new house that you moved into with her house. Suddenly, she can’t stop saying how small it would be for her family. Of course, she could only live in this house if she knocked down a wall and opened up the space. Well, fortunately, the “friend” had her own rented home and was obviously only speaking out of jealousy. If this “friend” didn’t like the choice, she could always have just gone and bought her own house instead of criticizing the best one you could afford.
I could go on with different examples of those type of negative comments they do not empower us because those two are ones derived out of jealousy and selfishness. The secret to negative comments and putting them to constructive use is to sort through the ones genuinely given to help you evolve into a better individual. After all, every experience that happens to us changes us in some way. It is only how we handle both the positive and negative comments that make us who we are or will eventually become.