Everyone loves positive reinforcement. Everyone loves a pat on the back. People always want to hear others talk good about them. They want a participation medal for anything. And while there is nothing wrong with receiving a compliment every once in a while, it’s important to remember that;
Criticism is worth so much more than compliments.
When I say ‘criticism’ I mean constructive criticism. There is a difference between a person who diminishes your accomplishments and demeans what you do and someone who sees your true potential and says: “Hey, this is good, but how about you work on this, so it could be even better”.
That is the type of criticism that you want in your life. That is the type of criticism that will push you to become better and never lets you settle for mediocrity.
If you think about it, everyone is a critic these days. Everyone and their mother wants their opinion to be heard. And that’s all that criticism really is; someone’s opinion. Most, if not all of it, is mainly subjective. When someone criticizes you it’s often not so much about what, that they are criticizing, it’s the why.
Ask yourself: “Why are they saying what they are saying?”
Because they either want to see you do better or they want to see you do worse. If they want to see you do better they will tell you exactly what they think you did right, what they think you did wrong, and what they think you can do better in order to improve.
That’s what I want to hear. Tell me what you like about my blog, tell me what you don’t like about it, and tell me how I can improve it. Don’t just give me some nonchalant opinion about how you think my work sucks.
Don’t feed my ego, feed my ambition.
But don’t belittle what I do.
Most people don’t want to see you succeed in life. Most people do not have what it takes to be on top. So they will do whatever it takes to keep you on the bottom with them because misery loves company. And the easiest way for them to do that is with words, because words can be hurtful. And they can lead to doubt. But never let someone’s criticism put out that fire inside you that makes you who you are and even more importantly, who you want to be.
You know what I love more than a nice compliment? An analysis of my work, someone who takes the time to break down something I did, evaluates it, gives me feedback and helps me perfect it.
See, a compliment is just that; someone telling you good job. But a compliment doesn’t tell you how to become a better person. It doesn’t teach you how to become a better writer, how to be a better athlete, or a better singer. It doesn’t help you to perfect your skills and craft.
And that is what life is all about; becoming better at the things that you do, day after day.