2:16 AM

How to Take Criticism

9th February 2011


“Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary.
It fulfills the same function as pain in the human body.
It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.”
~ Winston Churchill

Criticism is crucial for personal improvement. It’s the most direct way to find out what you should improve on. However, accepting criticism can be emotionally challenging. Afterall, we’re only human, who wants to hear bad stuff about ourselves?

It’s hard to not take it personally. Our instinctive reaction is to become defensive and we shut out potentially helpful and life-enhancing tips. By doing this, we miss out on what could supercharge our improvement.

So how can you take criticism without getting self-conscious and defensive?

Answer: An effective way to accept criticism is to externalize it.

When you externalize criticism, you escape the defensiveness trap. You stop being self-conscious and take criticism objectively, which lets you reap the benefits of the helpful tips that the criticism contains.

The criticism isn’t directed at you personally, but at a writer, artist, worker, developer (or whatever else you’re getting feedback for) that just happens to have the same name as you. When you take criticism objectively, your initial defensiveness fades away, simply because you’re not taking it personally anymore.

Externalizing criticism lets you extract helpful tips from even the most critical feedback. You take the bits that make sense to you and discard the rest. You don’t risk getting defensive or even feeling bad or self-conscious.

Externalizing criticism is also a shield from bad and unhelpful criticism. It doesn’t matter how much or what kind of comments and criticism you get: you look at it all objectively. You can take what makes sense to you and discard the rest.

When you externalize criticism, you can easily take and use it to supercharge your personal improvement.

5 Steps to Effectively Taking Criticism

Ready to improve your taking of criticism? Good.

Next time you ask for feedback, follow these 5 steps to externalize criticism:

1. Wait for your gut reaction to pass before doing anything – let your emotions disappear, so you don’t take the criticism personally and become defensive
2. Imagine the criticism is directed at someone else – some person who happens to have your name and does exactly what you do
3. Keep your mouth shut – listen, don’t defend
4. Discuss the person’s points – asking questions will a) help you to get even more useful tips from them, and b) externalize the criticism more (you’re seeing it even more objectively this way)

Rinse and repeat every time you get feedback until externalizing criticism becomes a habit.

(Bonus) How to even more effectively take criticism:

1. Be confident – believe in what you do, so that even the most critical comments don’t sway your direction
2. Have a clear goal in what you’re doing – so when you ask for feedback on it, you can take criticism to improve the key areas rather than let others dictate the direction and get lost

Why It’s So Hard to Take Criticism

The reason we get defensive when taking criticism is because we’re tied to our ego. So when someone is giving tips on how we can improve, that person is indirectly acknowledging that we’re not great at something. And our ego gets bruised.

As Dr. Leon F. Seltzer explains in his Psychology Today article on why criticism is so hard to take:

“Criticism, even well-intended criticism, can be understood as a direct assault on our ego. When (however unconsciously) we’ve come to associate our very selves with our ego or point of view, then whenever our perspective is questioned, disbelieved, or disputed, we cannot but experience ourselves in jeopardy – our mental and emotional poise at once thrown into disequilibrium.”

Even if it’s made clear that the criticism is not to criticize but instead show how you can improve, you naturally want to defend yourself. And when you go into defensive mode, you don’t get the tips from the criticism that could really supercharge your improvement.

So detach yourself from your ego – at least when you take criticism. Externalize the criticism so you look at it objectively, rather than as a critique of yourself (and thus your ego).

Nazirah : My Experience with Criticism

Back then, I don't really care what people think of me. When they told me that they don't like my attitude or the way I handle things, I think that I'm right, and they should be able to accept it.

But as I grew up, I am able to take criticism more openly. I will never get mad to the person who criticized me. I thank them for telling me my minus point. Only true friend are able to do that.

After they criticized me, I will listen and never argue. But if I had my reason, I will tell them. But then I guess, it is in our instinct to be defensive. But I do take note and on my own free time, I will think it thoroughly and think of ways to improve whatever it is that has been bothering them.

So friends, if you had anything about me you want to critic, feel free to contact me. I welcome criticism, that's the only way one can see oneself from another person's eye :)

How to Take Criticism

Having trouble taking criticism? Know that the useful tips can help, but you block yourself from them by taking criticism personally and getting defensive? Don’t worry – it’s a natural reaction, and there’s a solution: Effectively accept criticism by externalizing it.

You’ll supercharge your personal improvement by being able to easily get useful tips from people’s feedback. You’ll look at the criticism objectively and take away what makes sense to you, using it to improve what you’re doing. And by listening and discussing instead of defending, you’ll get even more use out of the criticism.

Now go out there and ask for some feedback. Take the criticism, externalize it, and supercharge your improvement.


1:22 AM

I Love You

I love you not only for what you are, but for what I am when I'm with you. I love you not only for what you have made of yourself, but for what you are making of me. I love you for the part of me that you bring out.

3:16 AM


3rd February 2011.

This days most of us, our life is centered around Facebook. What we do, where we are, what happened to us, what we want or don't want.., we update it in our Facebook.. I'm one of them.. But I try my best to only updates on things that I feel appropriate.. Like I state on the above..

Some people update what they ate, their moods, relationship problems they have (this including ups and downs), their pet(s), their attempt on selling products, multi-level marketing, how to earn more money by doing this that, what I mean is.. They update everything..

I'm not saying I'm perfect at updating my Facebook, I'm not. I have my fair share of "uncoolness" for sharing information over Facebook that did not need to be shared. I am ashamed of it :(

But I try not to become so self-obsessed. And since when do we became narcissistic? Since we have Facebook. After reading a bunch of articles over the net, I guess I'm one of them. Always updating my status and all. Sh*t. I don't like this trait. But I applaud myself to not always update my status all the time or share everything.

But hey, I don't mind if Facebook users share great articles that gave us information. That's really cool. I don't share informational stuff over my wall, but I do read them. I guess I'm more to reading type.

And I do agreed that Facebook is a great tool to share info, pictures, events, news, etc.. But please, we do not want to know everything that we don't need to know.

Here's an interesting readings : How to Suck at Facebook and Facebooks connection with Narcissism..

P/s : I'm allowed to write my thoughts on everything right? So don't go holding grudges against me for voicing out my opinion. If you don't like it, then move along. You don't have to agree with me. And I don't need to agree with you :)

6:12 PM

iPhone, BlackBerry, iCrap, CrapBerry

January 30th, 2011.

I don't get it.. Why people are so crazy about iPhone (from now refer to as iCrap) or BlackBerry (from now refer to CrapBerry)..

I don't mind if people who owned CrapBerry use it for business purposes.. Like sending work related email from anywhere or you are a manager that needs to know all issue(s) your team are facing..

But for normal employee? Why do you need that? Do you need to stay online 24 hours a day all time? Well, not me. I need my offline time.

Seeing Facebook this day, each time there's a person who update their status using CrapBerry, u can see people are going "Congrats new BB user" or "(Excitedly) What's your pin?" or "Wah.. hebatnyer pakai BB".. WTF?? Is that suppose to be some kind of success? Puhhleeezz..

And what about iCrap? You guys keep falling for Steve Jobs tricks! He launched iCrap 3 for that is so pricey.. Then add a few stupid features, launched iCrap 3G S which is ridiculously expensive.. N now iCrap 4.. Do i need to mention the price? N yet, people are soo wowed by it. Hey, if you are rich than had no idea what to do with your money, then please.. go ahead.. But if you are looking something that is value for money, don't go with this iCrap..

Also not forgetting iPad.. I mean.. c'mon! Sure it looks cool and all.. But for what purposes?? I myself love it when I first saw it.. After a quick browsing at a local store, I'm like "This is it? This is all this thing can do" for 3k? Madness..

All i'm trying to understand is.. Why people love these phone so much.. I come with several answer..

iCrap Users
  • They love the iCrap design
  • They love touch screen
  • Glamour kot
  • Easier way to share pic or everything in Facebook or Twitter
  • Bigger screen
  • It's Apple

CrapBerry Users
  • BBM for Free! (they don't count the BB service charge)
  • Stay online with friends ALL the time
  • Can update their Facebook or Twitter ALL the time (with WiFi nearby)
  • I don't know what else..

At the moment, this two phone didn't do it for me.. And I don't see a reason to get one.. (Never even thinking of getting one).. But then, since it's Apple first attempt of a phone, let's give 'em a break.. See if they can come with something that is worth my money.. As for CrapBerry, maybe if one day I become a manager, I might get one.. But the phone is strictly for business related.. Or it's free, given by the company :D

I'm liking Android. I don't have one now but I'm planning on getting one. Waiting for Android 3.0 :)

6:28 AM

To sum up what happen after my last-last entry

Hey All,

It's been like forever since I last updated my blog. What's new with me since last time..? A few things literally..

I met Sufian last December (2009). He is my childhood sweetheart. I know him since 11. I like him since then because he's the cutest thing my eyes ever laid on. He's short, fair and very smart. A bit of jerk because he knows that I like him and act like total asshole towards me. But, I don't hold anything against him. It's enough for me to know that he's crazy about me now. (Yesss!!) Baby, I love you..

I had my hernia operation last July. It really is painful. I couldn't walk. And a few weeks ago, my doctor told me I had another hernia. Last time it was on my right, now on my left. You had no idea how panicked I am at the moment. I just don't want to go through that again. And I wanna say thanks to Afan, Liza, Ayz, Rezza and Iqa for visiting me last time. I'm so touched.

Also, every Thursday, I play badminton with my friends at USJ. From 9pm to 12pm. I rarely exercise. So this is pretty much what I do to keep myself fit. I bought a Lightweight Carlton racket. It's really light because I don't want to strain my hand so much. Everytime I'm done playing badminton, my legs, hands, my whole body is in pain. I guess this what happens when you don't exercise much huh? :D

On 30th and 31st October, the company I work with sponsor us a trip sailing on a luxury yacht called Lili Marleen. It was an unforgettable experience. The yacht is big, 110 feet! And the thing I remember most is that all of work together setting the sail sheets. It really is beautiful. I had the pictures on my facebook :)

Today, I'm going karaoke with Shaira and Al at Redbox Pavilion. We are going to celebrate Al's birthday all together. It's too bad that my birthday this 12th November, Sufian is not gonna be there with me because he's stationed at Kerteh until March next year. It's my first birthday together and I don't get to be with someone I really wanna be with. I guess not everything can turn up the way we want it to be right.

I guess that's pretty all I can say now. I'm tired since I'm on my night shift now and not have a good sleep yet. Have a pleasant life people!

9:35 PM

Hello 2010

Hello.. I want to write.. But I had terrible migraine due to heavy cocoa consumption.. I will continue to updates once my migraine is gone.. :) Thank you for your interests in my boring life.. I wish you all have a nice year ahead..

6:55 AM


Worth = RM 9k