zondag 28 april 2013

Storm the Sorrow: negative criticism

Everyone has to deal with criticism in their life because it is a very important aspect of life. If we wouldn't criticise each other, how can we improve our work and ourself? Unfortunately not all criticism is constructive. Sometimes people criticise only to break down a person or his/hers work. Most of the time people who give negative criticism don't think about how they say it or they just don't care. I hate that. Because I'm not very self-confident  I am very sensitive to such criticism and I loath it that it can affect me. A couple of weeks ago a friend told me rather bluntly that my life was boring. Even though I was very sure she didn't meant to hurt me, she did. Perhaps it was so bluntly because we were chatting and you can't see the each others body langauge.
This negative criticism can go very far: you can emotionally abuse people through it. This is a very extreme example, but look at bullies! They often emotional abuse their target. I always try to be very careful with criticising. I think about how I best say it because I don't want to hurt anyone. if I cannot think of a 'nice' way to say it, I much rather don't say it at all. Though that might not always be the right option. This is a song about negative criticism and the video shows very nicely what can happen to you if you let it get to you:

 What I think can be as destructive, or even more, as people giving you negative criticism, is criticising yourself in a very negative light. Often it goes hand in hand with criticism given by others. I have to confess that I can criticise myself way too much in a negative way. I know it is wrong, but it is very hard not to do it. I know that no one is perfect but still everyone has the image of a perfect body, perfect friends, perfect life etc in their minds.
In my case I don't think people notice it when I am being very hard on myself. Sometimes I talk about it with my BF and he always manages to make me feel better but most of the time I bottle it up. Again something I shouldn't to, but I don't like to talk about how I feel and I don't have my heart on my tongue. I have a hard time opening up to people (even those I know very well) because it makes me vulnerable and I do not like that. Anyway, I try to stop myself to think negative about myself and sometimes it works, but sometimes I'm even doing it without fully realising it. I think I will not be the only one who has felt like this:

But negative criticism, no matter from where it comes, can break a person mentally. It's not a matter from growing a tick skin against it, but a matter of having respect fort each other and not try and hurt one another. Language is a  very powerful tool and words can have an enormous power, so use them wise!

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