How affected are you by criticism? As an artist, I used to be affected a lot! Someone would tell me that my photos were rubbish! I didn’t do a good job; I felt completely down. Even before I was a photographer, I had this thirst for perfection because I didn’t want to give anyone the opportunity to criticise me. Being criticised was like not being loved, abandoned and this was the worst feeling! I wanted to be loved by everyone scared of being rejected, slammed to feel like the worst offender if someone said I didn’t do an excellent job in my work. I often imagined other people thinking of me this way, wondering what are they thinking of me? How am I doing in my job? Was the job I did really bad? Did I reach expectations? I was so harsh on myself and with such low self-esteem, I always thought of myself being the lowest of lowest and not good enough oh despair!
ou can’t imagine how many times I thought someone was negatively thinking of me, I didn’t realise that these were my thoughts. When you’re stuck in a negative rut, it can be challenging to take a step away and understand your mind is spinning in the wrong way.
How can you can change your mindset?
When you’re in a state of thinking negatively, every criticism coming your way, feels like a blow, like the entire world is against you, this feeling my friend is a lack of self- esteem. The lower your self-esteem, the more you will feel affected by criticism. So work on that first, learn to love yourself, practice self-love in front of the mirror, look at the triggers that make you feel so low and not worth it. When someone is criticising your work, your body, your way of life, whatever?
Bear in mind that this type of criticism is often a fear inside the person slamming you, something has been triggered inside them and the’re expressing it via You, you have nothing to do with it really, so let it go, easier said than done, but try to think this way and learn to come back to love
Criticism is not always a bad thing
Our first reaction when we get criticised is to be defensive, no way I’m like this! I did a great job, it’s not my fault, and you know what? We’re all like this because our ego can’t stand to hear we’re doing wrong.
Take a step away from it all, and think again, what can you learn from it? I’m not talking about someone being nasty to you for no other reason than their self-hatred. I want you to consider what has been said and if there’s a way to improve, maybe someone criticising your work wanted to help you progress, or it was just a communication issue?
We all have different ways of thinking and how you think might utterly differ from how the other person feels. So when someone expresses concern with you about your work, or else, listen, be a 100% present in the conversation, acknowledge what they have to say and either offer to come back with an answer later or give them your thoughts. Be open and grateful about the teaching they’ re giving you, it’s not about being wrong or right, it’s about learning, making progress and what they could teach you.
How are you coping with criticism? Is it something that is affecting you a lot?