Listening to criticism from others can be a double edged sword. Some words of correction or admonition lead to self improvement and greater good. Other times, such types of reproval by others can be counterproductive and abrasive.....especially when one's intentions are not to lead another individual in a better direction. Sometimes it can be hard to differentiate.
An example of constructive criticism would be telling an aspiring singer that they have a world of potential, however, if they really want to maximize their potential, they need to use more diaphragm and less throat. Now, that being said, there is no way to know if the intended party is going to take your friendly advice as constructive criticism or as an insult. It all depends on their level of emotional maturity, the size of their ego and their desire to get better.....oh, and how you choose to phrase things. This is also true in reverse. When constructive criticism is sent your way, how will you respond? Will you learn and grow from it or pout like a child?
Insults are a different story. Criticism with no desire to help another human being should often(but not always) be taken with a grain of salt. If you are being a jerk, sometimes you need a slap in the face. If that is not who you are, this type of criticism should most likely be disregarded. Oftentimes it is coming from someone who needs a wake up call of their own. They would rather point out your flaws than let you see theirs, so they will criticize you(or anyone else) any opportunity they get to do so. An example of that would be if someone told that same aspiring singer from the first paragraph that they are horrendous and might as well throw in the towel. Real singers are born with a gift. You either have it or you don't...sorry. Now this would crush some people! But if you learn to differentiate between different types of criticism, you'll soon be able to brush off comments like these from jealous or negative individuals.
I'm sure at this point in your lives, most of you already have a pretty good idea as to what is a compliment and what is an insult. But, differentiating between one type of criticism and the next often falls into a gray area that is rarely discussed. Hopefully, this helped bring some clarity to those of you who have been having some trouble with this concept, and some re-enforcement to those of you who already had a handle on the subject. In summary, if it's not meant to help, it's meant to hurt.....so take it with a grain of salt and move on with your life. Keep striving for excellence, and keep me posted with all of you success stories. Take care everyone!
See you next time!!!