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2 Responses to The Truth about Criticism

  • Daniel Zrymiak says:

    Hi Duane,

    I found this article to be very profound and I feel compelled to comment. First, with respect to leather watch straps, the leather is an organic garment which is less sensitive on skin than plastic or metallic alternatives. Due to my excema which can lead to irritation, dryness, and open skin cracks causing bleeding, I stopped wearing watches altogether and limit my hand accessories to my wedding ring. When I did wear watches, I found leather preferable and more tolerable to my sensitive skin condition. In this case, style and aesthetics take a lower priority to personal comfort. The lesson is that before mocking someone’s attire, take a moment to consider whether there is a medical purpose behind those thick eyeglasses, those clunky shoes, the unusual headwear, or something that may diverge from GQ or Esquire.

    With respect to criticism, there are many levels and grades. It stems from the motive of the person providing the criticism. If it is from a place of love or mentorship, it is sometimes helpful to get respectful and honest feedback, even when the news is not delightful. If however the criticism is malicious and vindictive in nature, that is when I find it to create the most significant long-term damage. That aligns with the poison which you have described.

    When criticism comes in the form of public personal attacks, it is an assault. There is no balance that can be restored, and your recommendation to flip the criticism around is valid and applicable. People project their own fears and insecurities with their comments, and quite often the most damaging critiques they communicate are intended to deflect from their own shortcomings.

    It is difficult to deal with the poisonous, acidic critiques communicated destructively, especially when they come from those in your life whom you had believed to be trustworthy supporters. Your article is helpful in this regard. I have also taken solace in the scripture Paul Romans 12, which takes the burden of correcting the situation from me.

    Thank you Duane for publishing and forwarding your article.

    • duanekrip says:

      Thank-you Dan! As I wrote this piece I contemplated if I should address Constructive Criticism. In the interest of brevity I chose not to. You are right; there are times when criticism comes from that of a constructive or loving place. It is positive and should be seen as that. We see this in work the workplace where a Superior is coaching/ mentoring a Subordinate…or in a parent/ child relationship.
      With that said, there is a fine line where the “constructiveness” becomes tainted with the critics own pain. As an example, if the Superior laces their tone of voice or choice of words toward the Subordinate with spite or arrogance the line is crossed. Another example from a client I worked with was the critical nature of their parents toward their chosen career path. Although the parent’s motive was out of a place of love and caring for their child, their point of view was tainted with their own conditionings and pain.
      For sure there are different ways to view criticism…it’s crucial not to take it personally whether constructive or not.

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