How To Handle Criticism

By Aniekan Andikan 12 months ago


We get to hear what others have to say about us whether we ask for it or don’t. Some say things that make you so angry that you want to kill somebody’s child, others say things that get you depressed for a long time and there are those whose talks sweeten your belly and get to your head, causing you to start acting pompous.

Looking at all that, you will agree that bad reviews and good reviews are equally bad if they are not well handled. This article will highlight 4 logical steps you could use in handling what people say about you in a manner that is befitting a high class member of the society.


Be Objective

The first step in handling people’s comments is to take it with an objective mindset.

Have you ever witnessed someone react violently, whether verbally or physically, to an observation or criticism or even an insult? Of course! Most of us have. Check this out. One friend tells the other friend that he has big eyes and the other friend gets angry and slaps his friend. We are all familiar with this kind of scenario and most times, if you look at the angry person well, his eyes actually look big.

What causes such animalistic behavior is that the angry person takes the comment too personal. When you look at criticism or praise or any kind of observation as just the giver’s point of view, it loses the sting it would have carried if you took it personally. What the person is saying may be the truth but if you are objective about it, it will only feel like he or she is saying what is just on her mind and not what is universally correct and you will react differently to that.

Other than reducing the pain of the comment, this also helps you to keep an open mind which enables you to listen and pay attention to get feedback that can be useful in the next step. We should know that criticism is a form of feedback just as praise is.

So you see that if a comment is viewed with an objective mindset, there will be self-control against behaving like a mad person and you will have an open mind which will help you get the message that is communicated in the criticism.



After you get the message that is embedded in the observation, criticism or praise, you want to confirm if it is true or not.

The thing is there is always some truth in every criticism or even insult you receive. If we are just truthful enough to check, we might find the truths in it. So, once you get the message, find out if the observation is true.

Examine yourself. Maybe someone read your work and observed that you have issues with punctuation. You could confirm that by reading standard books to check if you are using punctuation well or not.

Ask other people. You can ask your family and friends about the observation and from their responses, you get the truth.



After you have determined the authenticity of the criticism, you decide whether to work on it or not. What will determine your decision are a couple of things that matter to you.

You can decide after asking yourself a couple of questions. Does this matter to me? Can I do without this issue? Do I need this where I’m going to in life?

The message in the criticism could be that your writing sucks, that you mix tenses and you don’t know how to punctuate your writings. You check and confirm that there is some truth in it. If you want to be a renowned writer, you know this is important to you and you can’t do well as a writer if you don’t fix your tenses and punctuations issues.

But if someone said that you have an Akwa Ibom accent and you are not thinking about doing professional voice-overs for British or American audiences for the rest of your life, that should not really bother you.



After you decide to work on it, this is where you get into action to rectify or manage the criticism.



Different people react differently to criticism, insults and observations. There’s only one reaction that is desirable – the one where you don’t get to act like a mad person.

To be able to maintain your cool, receive criticism with an open mind so that you get the message, verify the authenticity of the message, decide if you need to work on it or not, then get to work if you need it where you are going to in life.

This way, criticism will not get to your heart and praises will not get to your head.

Do you disagree or do you have additional points? Share in the comment box, let's all learn. 

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Aniekan Andikan
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