Monday, December 1, 2014

It's Critical Not to be Critical


Have you noticed how some people just seem to find fault in everything? You go out with someone and buy them coffee but the cup is just not big enough (or small enough) or the chairs around the table should be blue instead of green, or the flowers on the table are just not fresh! Some people have the habit of commenting on, and criticizing just about everything. What is it going to take to be positive and to look at the brighter side of life?

No one wants to spend a day with a critical person. If you have tried it you know just how it feels. When someone continues to find fault in you, or the objects around you, or the way you run your life, then you feel as though you want to run from them as fast you can. Commenting on a persons possessions or circumstances is almost the same as insulting the person themselves.



Criticism is an expression of disapproval and always follows a judgment. It almost implies that our life needs a performance review and in this case we have failed... at least in the eyes of the beholder! The fact is that criticism usually tells us more about the critic, than the receiver.

Critics are usually critical of most things and most people, usually because they are unhappy people and want to share their dissatisfaction with everyone else. Unfortunately their complaints will not change the world or other people, and so they will never be happy.

Critics have a time and place to carry out their 'vocation', but unsolicited advice, especially when delivered with an air of superiority, never goes down well. Knowing what to say, when, and where, and with whom, an art is. But if we have a tendency to be critical (and who isn't, from time to time?) then the lesson we really need to learn is how to be happy with ourselves.

It is not our true nature to focus on the sad or bad. Focusing on the faults of the child will never make him or her grow up to be a 'somebody'. Rather, he will always be seeking the approval of adults or peers even when he is in his rocking chair because that is how he has learned to measure successes

The soul blooms when there is love, acceptance and acknowledgement. Its much nicer to be complimented than complained about. Take birthdays as an example; the day when your inbox is filled with good wishes and blessings from all over the world. How do you feel?

Try taking a few moments every now and then to just see the goodness in all the things around you and all the people in your orbit at any given time. The critic can always find something to complain about in any situation, but it is really simply a point of view which is coming from a deep seated negative attitude, which can be shifted.


Even if you can see that something or someone needs improvement and can benefit from that, just try in that moment to accept the situation or the person... comment later if need be... but in that moment control your emotions, just try to expand your tolerance level, and increase your acceptance level. This very deed may help the other to seek guidance for improvement, or invite comments. But moreover, you will feel better for keeping a positive vision. You will find your relationships will improve in leaps and bounds.

Another major aspect to this whole exercise is to master the ability to remain quiet with the mind and the lips for a while, especially when I want to jump in or to react. If my mind is like any unleashed dog that barks and bites at anything passing by then it means I do not have a grip on my mind or my tongue.

Learning to stay positive is a training we must give to the mind if we are to survive and not get stressed and stained by life. You may, for example, see the dry bare tree and think how ugly it is, but switch your thoughts to how momentous it is that the tree is still standing, and see its majesty instead. Someone may not get you exactly the gift you wanted, but at least they had the thought. Or, you may have a challenge with your colleague at work, but hey, think again, are YOU perfect? And would it really hurt to be co-operative rather than critical?

Treating ourselves more kindly and shifting our vision towards appreciation and gratitude for the people and things around us are the best antidotes for criticism. When I feel a sense of contentment within, then I dont notice the little things around me that would otherwise bug me. And if I feel content with myself, then I am less likely to feel hurt by the criticism of others. Instead I can send them positive thoughts and good wishes, for they are the ones who are in need!

Its time... to shift your mindset and take a positive view. Being critical is destructive and unproductive, so for your own good and the good of others... its critical not to be critical!

'It's Time...' by Aruna Ladva, BK Publications London

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