21DPC Day 13 – What are 3 Good Things about Receiving Criticisms?

This is Day 13 of the 21-Day Positivity Challenge (21DPC) for March 2012.

21DPC Day 13 Question

Today’s positivity question is:

What are 3 Good Things about Receiving Criticisms?

Receiving criticism

Most people think of criticisms as a bad thing. Some people are even hesitant whenever I *ask* them to give me feedback about things they don’t like – evident when you read the round-up posts at the end of every challenge.

But why? Criticisms aren’t bad. They are only bad when you think of them as bad. Criticism, when offered constructively, can be the best self-improvement tool you can ever get. In fact, when I read feedback, there are times I skip straight ahead to the criticism portions, because they provide the most revealing and actionable information.

What are 3 good things you can identify about receiving criticisms, over not receiving any criticisms at all?

Check out the following related-content on facing critical people:

Your Task:

  1. Reflect and answer today’s question(s). Write as few or as many words as needed to fully express yourself.
  2. Think over the criticisms you received in the past.
    1. Have you ever received criticisms before? What were they about?
    2. Did you take to them objectively, or did you see them as a personal attack? Did you feel hurt, insulted, or affected by those criticisms?
    3. Reviewing your reply for today’s positivity question, how can you now see the criticisms in a different light?
  3. Identify at least one positive thing about your day. It may be something small or something big – as long as you deem it as something positive, it counts. If you have more than 1 thing to share, then by all means, go for it!

Share Your Answers!

After you are done, share your answers in the comments area.

If you’re doing this at the start of the day, you can post your answer for today’s question first, then work on your positivity task throughout the day, then return at the end of the day to share your results for your positivity task and your end-of-day positive reflection.

Check out other participants’ answers. Pick 1-2 participants’ answers and make a meaningful reply to them. Engage in the discussions. This is a group course, so let’s support each other in these 21 days!


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« 21DPC Day 12 – What Does It Mean To Be a Positive Person? How Can You Be More Positive?

21DPC Day 14 – What are 5 Things to Celebrate about Your Life Today? »

86 Responses | Share Your Results!

  1. Bette says:


    1. Receiving criticism can be a blessing in that it reveals useful information to me that I had I would not seen otherwise. In this way, I can get alot of mileage out of criticism in that it can help me grow and learn.

    2. Receiving criticism can keep me on my toes regarding keeping my ego from running wild. I can be grateful for that safeguard against complacency.

    3. Receiving criticism can be a gauge for seeing how much I care about how/what others think about me. If the criticism is coming from a constructive, loving place, I am grateful that person cared enough to bring the criticism to me. If the criticism is really about the other person, and not about me, then I can hone my skills on being centered in my confidence of who I am, and not react to their “stuff.” I need not defend or explain when it comes to being true to myself, a self that I have come to know and love. :D :heart:

    I have received criticism before, and many criticisms were relating to my being overweight, … a lifetime of criticism having to do with my weight, my diet, how i looked, how I moved, my size, etc. As a child and teenager, those comments were very hurtful and demeaning, (personal attacks), and I felt “less than,” “not good enough,” and humiliated. There was nowhere to go away from my body, so I had a tendency, my body and I, to withdraw, and be less social, which caused me to spend much time with myself. Fortunately, there were always people in my life that I felt loved and accepted me unconditionally, so I had that to fall back onto when I felt battered and feeling so unloved.

    It took me quite some time to not be affected by hurtful criticisms relating to my body. I came to realize that hurtful comments were about those making the comments, not about me. There hasn’t been any year in my life that I wasn’t on some kind of reduction program or food plan. I have always been challenged with weight related issues, and demonstrated copious amounts of discipline to control my body weight. Whether the criticizers knew about all that discipline and focus or not, there were always derogatory comments and criticism. Fortunately, I have become more confident, self-directed, and I have grown so much in knowing who I am. I am clear about healthy boundaries and not taking on others’ burdens, and not falling into the trap of being scapegoated. I am grateful that there have been supportive people in my life, to sweeten an often difficult path to tread.

    Other criticisms came mostly from parents and siblings, and alot of that criticism was about their own fears and insecurities and need for approval projected onto me. This always played havoc with my mind, since I had my own fears and insecurities and needs for approval. That, along with “people pleasing,” which was something that took the focus off me, and sought to win the favor of others, which led to living in the shadow of others. Fortunately, I have learned to live my own dream, and be on purpose, and enjoy myself every moment on this journey…MY life, LIVING MY LIFE, instead of living through another person.

    Criticism does not define me, but it can help define me, sorting out what is about me, and what is not. What I can improve upon, careful not to fall into complacency. What can I learn from any critical comments that I hear myself saying? I embrace being honest with myself, and hug to my heart, “To Thine own self be true”….. :heart:

    Today I enjoyed a nice decrease in my weight (almost 3 lbs), and I felt an increase in my energy.
    With that energy increase, I did some housecleaning, and that started my exercise activity for the day. After the housecleaning, I exercised with the incomparable Steven Tyler (youtube), and really got a good work-out using resistance bands, stretches, and other moves. :dance:

    Like: Thumb up +1

  2. Bette says:

    Also, I wanted to say that the picture heading this question, speaks to me……

    In the palm of my hand, are the answers of my heart. :heart:

    I pay attention to what my heart KNOWS as true.
    In doing so, I live my best life, authentically, deep down to the core of me.

    Like: Thumb up +1

  3. charlotte says:

    What are 3 Good Things about Receiving Criticisms?

    1: If you receive criticism and you listen and reflect on yourself, to act and make improvement. You prove yourself you as a humble person and eagar to make progess.
    2. You found yrself a good mirror, people who criticised you are not hypocrites. Everyone like sugar coated words but they dare to face you and make a point. They want you to improve and work on yrself. You found yourself a good friend.
    3.Only when you know your blindspot through others, you truely know yourself. You are not stubborn, you see yourself in more points of view, and you become more well rounded person.

    The criticism I received recently is I tend to ignore people around me.
    There are so many works and plans and dreams. I wanted to do, but I just didn’t not make it an actual plan, targets and time limit and actions. My hand was stuffed with things and I did not connected to my fds and boy fd. Another criticism is I think to much without talking actions. :rolleyes:
    You know what recently I just met a guy and offers me a stay in France so I can learn painting in a short course. I wanted to quit my job very long time ago, was wondering should I just take a leap and go.
    What do you guys think?

    Back to the time when I receive it, I wasn’t really refecting, I know some part of it is true but just think it may be a person attack. But now I can see they are really true and something I should reflect on and take it in heart.

    I did pay for an event to go today, its a charity event that helps the people living in cage home, like a family of 3 living in a room just able to put a double bed inside. I really wish the govement can give them a better living condition.

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  4. Sara says:

    The three positive things with receiving criticism are for me :
    1.Opertunity to improve myself
    2.The freedom of doing what I want with it, If I don’t want to receive it it´s not mine 
    3.Look at it, think about it, consider it and learn from it !

    Like: Thumb up +1

  5. jola says:

    What are 3 Good Things about Receiving Criticisms?
    1-The people have respect and tell it in your eyes and dot go around saying it behind your back.
    2-The critic is about something, be it a fair or not there is something there you are being criticized about and it may be something you would like to know, at least how do the others see it.
    3-It gives you the opportunity to improve your self, or defend the thing you are being criticized about.

    Think over the criticisms you received in the past. Have you ever received criticisms before? What were they about?
    Of course I’ve received criticisms before about all kind of thing starting from the way I am to the thing I do ore believe to.

    Did you take to them objectively, or did you see them as a personal attack? Did you feel hurt, insulted, or affected by those criticisms?

    Well that depends. It depend of who said that, how he sad that and what was it related with. In general I’m OK with criticisms if it made in the write way.

    Reviewing your reply for today’s positivity question, how can you now see the criticisms in a different light?
    Well considering that I am a little critical my self I think I realized that I have to be very careful with the way I express myself so that the other understand what i’m saying and don’t take it for bad.

    Like: Thumb up +1

  6. JadePenguin says:

    Criticism? I like it a lot when it’s honest and gives me guidelines on how to improve! I wouldn’t like people to pretend everything is okay and then act obviously different! Almost as if they had confirmation bias and they don’t want me to become better and prove their initial impression wrong…
    I can’t think of any recent criticisms, though I’ve asked. Which is a bummer, cause I know I’m not perfect yet! In the past, I think the one I heard most was “you should look more feminine”, which is actually far from construstive criticism; just some men living out their gender stereotypes. What I picked up from there though was that sometimes it’s fun to experiment with looks and I should not feel that people won’t take me seriously if I work on my looks. Which is a stereotype I actually have myself – that women who spend too much time on their looks can’t do anything else well. Which is certainly true for many of them, sadly *feminist rage*.
    Positive yesterday – met some friends; went to an event where a pro-vice-chancellor was speaking. Nothing spectacular.

    Like: Thumb up +1

  7. Kimberly says:

    For the most part, I appreciate criticism when it is constructive criticism. I think it gives you a different perspective on something that you may not have realized on your own. It encourages open-minded thinking and new ideas. Finally, it encourages you to learn and grow in ways that may have not been possible without that criticism.

    There are situations where I don’t think criticism is appropriate. Some may disagree with me, but if criticism is coming from a person who is deliberately trying to be cruel or knock others down with belittling words, I don’t consider that helpful or worth my time. Too many times, I have been verbally criticized where the other person is only trying to hurt me. For example, my mother telling me that I have made the biggest mistake of my life by getting married to someone who was not HER choice for me, or my art teacher telling me not to bother studying fine art because I will never be an artist. The only good thing that came from these people putting me down was that I was strong enough to prove them wrong. Still, there are much better ways to give criticism without making that person feel worthless. Did I take this as a personal attack? Absolutely! I’m still mad about these situations. :angry:

    My Positive Thing:
    Well, yesterday I was feeling pretty tired from a long day of work, but I got to enjoy a little bit of the warm sunshine yesterday evening before the sun set. Looking forward to a week of beautiful weather! :D

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    • Sara says:

      That is so true! Some people are not really giving “constructive criticisms” but more putting down your goals and dreams and making you feel like you’re out of your mind if you are trying to attain xxx goal. I’ve had that situation before with one of my best dearest friends but I took it with a grain of salt and put things into perspective by allowing her to have her own opinion of my situation and not letting that dampen my goals.

      Like: Thumb up +2

  8. Netta says:

    1) Gives you food for thought if you will. You can take into consideration if someone is being critical toward you, could you improve on the area or is it something to do with them. If it’s bothering you, it may very well be an area you need to improve on.
    2) I would much rather a person be honest with me rather than give me praise for something I’ve done wrong. I don’t want someone to constantly praise me and not see that I can improve on things in my life.
    3) At times having another person point out something you aren’t doing well can help you to realize that you need to improve on an area that maybe you never noticed before.
    I had my boyfriend being very critical of the time I spend doing other activities and neglecting household chores. At first I was defensive and hurt, as well as angry. After thinking it over, I realized that I do need to balance my more fun activities in with my house cleaning and it ended up being a positive thing after all.

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  9. Robin says:

    Three good things about receiving criticisms:
    1. If you think about them, it may help you understand another person’s perception about you.
    2. Criticisms can provide a growth opportunity if you choose to change something about yourself.
    3. It can start a discussion with someone else that can improve your relationship if handled correctly.

    Past criticisms:

    1. A lot in the past few years: I’m not as fun as “other person”. I’m not as sexy as “other person”. I don’t take care of myself as well as “other person”. Why can’t you be like “other person” and not care. I don’t do enough. I’m not supportive. I don’t know how to relax.

    2. Because the relationship with the person giving them was very strained, and because I was being compared to other people, I did take them as a personal attack. I felt very hurt by them and didn’t think objectively about them. The more I thought about them, the worse I felt about myself. But after time has passed, I have gone back and looked more closely at them. I do think there was some nuggets of truth to them. I’m not interested in becoming like someone else, but I do want to be the best “me” possible.

    3. Criticisms can be good things, especially when they come from people who have your best interests in mind.

    Positive things about today: My best friend calmed me down, and reminded me what was really important to me, because I was having a bad day. Sat in the sun after work and let go of the stresses of the day and enjoyed the nice weather! Made a phone call to someone I hadn’t talked to in awhile that is going through a hard time, just to check in and see if there was anything I could do to help. Spent some time talking to my daughter, no agenda, just relaxing and talking.

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  10. Renee Sime says:

    What are three good things about receiving criticism?

    First of all, criticism acknowledges you and what you are doing. Acknowledgement, whether at work, home or school, is very important. It helps you feel like you are contributing to something in some way, even if it is just a small gesture. I think we all feel better when we are acknowledged for something we do or how we act.

    Second, criticism lets you see yourself in the eyes of others. How are you treating people? How well do you do your job? How do you affect other people? The result may not always make a person happy, but you need to be aware of these things.

    Third, criticism helps with learning and self improvement. It isn’t supposed to be negative or hurtful, so don’t take it personally. Everybody continues to learn everyday, and everybody always has room for self improvement.

    I was lucky and landed a job in my job field when I was still in my first years of college. I remember receiving criticisms from both my new job, and from school. I often times took criticism very personally. The criticisms I received were mostly just a review of my performance, and my boss and/or teacher telling me where I could improve. At first, it made me feel like I was failing as a student, and as an employee. As I got older and more experienced, I learned to take those criticisms and actually use them to better myself or my performance.

    Now when I get criticism at work, or elsewhere, I really do try to look at them objectively. When my boss shows me where I can improve at work, I do it, because I love my job, and I want to keep it. If I am doing something wrong, I want to know. I want to be able to do my job correctly, because it makes me a valuable employee.

    One positive thing about my day: I accomplished a lot at home after work today. It felt like the start of my spring cleaning, which I oddly enjoy!

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  11. Felicia says:

    3 Good things about Criticism

    1. It provides feedback that you can use to measure your beliefs about yourself against that of another person. If it is constructive then you have an opportunity to make a change and grow.

    2. It provides insight about how an individual feels about you or your work. Again, providing an opportunity to make a change.

    3. It may bring to your attention something about yourself that you were previously unaware of.

    Today’s positive: Worked with dad for a bit this morning to fill in cracks in the pool deck. #FatherDaughterBonding :)

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  12. Sara says:

    Three positive aspects about receiving criticisms are: (1) you can improve yourself; (2) you become self-aware; and (3) you can teach someone else what you have learned.

    The criticisms I’ve received in the past have been about being controlling of my younger brother by my dad. At that time, I took it as a personal attack and I felt hurt because he had given me advice all along to advice my younger brother and watch out for him. However, after the fact, he was actually giving me advice to let my little brother learn on his own because he is not so little anymore (he is 20 years old) because he is too set in his ways and I am too so we are never going to agree and see eye to eye on many things. Now, after today’s positivity challenge, I can reflect on how I am more at peace with myself that I cannot control his actions, regardless of how reckless they can be. I support him as an older sister but I am not babying him and holding him step by step because his life is his own journey, and I will just worry about my own life.

    Something positive about my day is that I went running for four miles with my dog at the beach. I love feeling the ocean breeze and letting my dog meet so many people and dogs along the way. Good physical and social exercise for him.

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  13. Nice video you have on youtube

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  14. VickiB says:

    I’m a little behind in posting comments!

    Good things about criticism:

    1. If it is valid, you can use it to improve yourself, your work, or whatever the criticism was directed at.
    2. If it is not valid, it shows you something about the person doing the criticism, that you may not want to associate with them anymore.
    3. Valid or not, polite or nasty, it shows something about your interactions with people and you can learn from that.

    Re: my third point, I had a really negative interaction with a distantly related family member that could have been avoided if I had checked things out carefully and reviewed what she had already said and reminded her of her promises before acting on what she had said. From that I learned that you need to be extremely careful around her and that she says things she doesn’t mean, both when she’s angry and when she’s making promises. I also decided that I needed to spend more time in ANY interactions checking to be sure that I understand people correctly and that they have not changed their minds about something without me realizing it.

    I’ve been criticized for the way I take care of my husband and his medical needs. According to some people I should be doing more for him. Sometimes I feel mean for not doing more, but he tells me that he prefers to be as independent as possible… So the criticism about me needing to do more is not valid. But it did make me think about how I am as a caregiver. But I also realized that this was a really negative person and I didn’t need that negativity in my life, so we see very little of them anymore.

    I was told that I looked like hell. Gee, thanks. Unfortunately, it was true. I had gotten so involved in caregiving that I was neglecting myself. So I started to pull myself together again and *then* I realized that I had begun a downward spiral toward depression and that criticism helped me stop it.

    Positivity for today: I already put some things in the Day 14 post. But here’s another: I have more than five positive things in my life, and I am very grateful for them all.

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  15. Ranjani says:

    1.Sometimes we may not found our self about the negative things or anything that is barrier to our growth.
    After critism by any one we may able to realise that.

    2.If we miss that person who critise us in every thing we may miss some jokes and seems to be interesting that we already know what will they tell about our activities.

    3.They help us to get rid of those bad or negative qualities as soon as possible.Even if we found out those negative things in ourself and tried to change that means we did’t change ourself within a short time period,But if that was happen by others critism we will do it in very short time period.

    If they critise me even though i didn’t made any mistakes , never care about that and will enjoy their reaction for my every activities.That is all. :dance:

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