Monday, August 15, 2011

Criticism, or 3 ways to deal with trolls

There's no way around it: criticism sucks.  No one likes it, no one wants to hear it, and no matter how great your day is going, one critical comment can ruin it.

It's true.

Criticism is always going to be a part of our lives.  Unless you live under a rock, there is always someone, somewhere, waiting to knock down something you worked so hard on.  It doesn't matter whether it was deserved, constructive, or done just out of spite.  Criticism hurts.

So how do you deal with it?  I have 3 methods that work for me.

1.  Ignore it.  (Okay, I didn't say they were the most emotionally healthy methods...) There are always going to be people out there who will tear you up just to be hurtful.  Sometimes, the best thing you can do is just ignore the trolls. 

2.  Cry.  No, wait, really.  Someone told you your clever idea was stupid, and it hurt your feelings.  Let it out (in private).  You'll feel better.  And if not, see # 3.

3. Grow from it.  Sometimes the critic says something that we don't want to hear, but we know is true.  This is often the case when I get feedback from others on my writing.  That's right, I actually ask for criticism!  I seek an opinion from a trusted source, and use it as a chance to improve what I'm working on.  But what if they aren't a trusted source, or they don't have anything constructive to say?  See # 1.

Now, I know that there are a bunch of good ideas out there on how to deal with criticism.  If you've got a great coping mechanism to share, please leave a comment below.

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