Whether challenges, insults, or just joking comments, we are often – and naturally – faced with criticism. In any social interaction, each person is looking for personal affirmation, and this often leads to confrontation. Due to emotions and/or guilt, it is often difficult to respond with respect and openness.
Though criticism can hurt, it also provides an exciting platform to demonstrate resilience and charisma. But how can we be sure to act this way? How can we control our emotions and make the most of what is often seen as a personal attack? That’s the focus of today’s article.
Many readers wonder what psychological characteristics and abilities are needed to truly adopt an Alpha male posture. Learning to deal with criticism is one of the first steps in developing self-confidence. If you’ve got a hot temper, do yourself a favor and read this article!
Know how to take criticism at face value
As the target of a personal judgment, individuals often adopt a defensive attitude when faced with antagonism. Excuses and aggression are shields, walls built between yourself and the enemy.
Usually, criticism is equated with a desire to hurt or demean someone. However, it can also be constructive. The way it’s worded can help us see the speaker’s intention, but there is always a possibility of finding an opportunity for growth.
Criticism of your credibility, your work or your motivations is never easy to take, especially if it is justified with objective explanations (for example, if it criticizes your behavior or your way of understanding).
Before you overreact, and to give you time to respond in a relevant way, you have to think about the basics of what is being said. Are you dealing with someone who is jealous of you? A woman who is rejecting you? An authority figure?
Inevitably, your reaction will define the situation, because your understanding of the criticism will vary based on the source. The most important tip is to always take the time to formulate a thoughtful response. Do not let yourself lose control and react emotionally, because thatcould make things worse.
By taking the time to argue logically, focusing on the facts rather than your emotions, you will have the advantage of keeping the interaction rational rather than resorting to aggression.
A criticism is certainly a judgment, but it does not take into account the unique situation that led you to make a certain decision or say what you did. You have to understand that others see the world from their own perspective.
Some things we do in total innocence, can be considered disrespectful by others (according to their own personal values).
What you should be able to do is to simply explain your thought process, without trying to justify it or get confrontational. Remember that we are all different, and that is what makes life interesting
A reaction that shows your adaptation to your environment
People who react violently, who seek only to hurt others or argue are rarely the smartest people in the crowd. This is what you have to keep in mind when faced with a conflict.
Instead of raising your tone, it is better to demonstrate intellectual superiority (even temporarily) by keeping your cool. If the criticism seems accurate, don’t be embarrassed to hear it. This can be an opportunity for self-improvement. At the moment, it is often hard, but don’t go off the rail too quickly.
There is no shame in holding back your emotions, contrary to what many may think.
If you think rationally about what you’re hearing before you react hastily, you’ll avoid being seen as childish or immature.
It’s up to you to differentiate between legitimate feedback (a woman who rejects you because you came on too strong) and real provocations (insults or personal attacks) in a way that leaves you in control.
In the case of a conflict situation (where the criticism is intended for a harmful purpose), don’t play the game your opponent is trying to get you to play. Resorting to humor is a good way to get yourself out of potentially uncomfortable situations.
Personally, I‘ve found a little technique to never let my temper get the better of me. If someone attacks me, I just smile, nod, and say “yes” to the speaker, as if we were friends.
Because this reaction is the opposite of what one would expect, it tends to release the pressure and take away some of the speaker’s power. Though you might not always be able to react this way, the key element here is the idea of accepting other’s ideas.
Others have every right to think and say what they want. Sometimes we won’t agree. But in the end, we’re free to be who we want to be, even if some of these judgments can hurt.
Rather than stopping our progress, criticism can motivate us to improve our interpersonal skills and refine our personalities. It forces us to stay alert and to understand which parts of our behavior can sometimes be misinterpreted.
What can you take away from this? How should you react to criticism?
Just keep your calm, be sure of yourself and of the choices you’ve made. You weren’t necessarily right or wrong – you’ve just followed your convictions. Criticism is a reminder that your desire for affirmation can be at odds with someone else’s
And there’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, we all tend to criticize and judge each other, for one simple reason: This allows us to avoid being the center of attention, taking focus away from our own weaknesses and failures.
To go further, one could even say that criticism is a way to put our own fears into words. We are all afraid of not measuring up, so we point out other’s faults.
An individual who responds well to criticism and has an aura of confidence often takes time to think before responding (without letting his feelings govern what he says) and always keeps his composure.
He understands that to err is human, and that making a mistake, even if someone else points it out, doesn’t need to be a big deal. After all, that’s the basis of meeting people: putting it all out there for someone else to judge. So you’d better be prepared to sometimes not match their expectations.
In any case, we hope that you now understand the importance of mastering your impulses, aggression, impatience, and the need for self-defense. The more you react negatively, the more power you give to the person making the critique.
It’s by being measured, aware, and conscious of our own efforts and shortcomings that we will be able to achieve personal growth. Criticism is just part of the challenge. It’s up to you to understand yourself and to present yourself in the best light possible!