Sensitivity to Criticism



Sensitivity to criticism is a common issue. We all have the want to be rewarded for our work and feeling as if we are doing something incorrect can shape the way that we see our skills or talents. When we learn how to take criticism and turn it into something useful we will then come to appreciate it instead of reject where the statement is coming from.

Often times we receive criticism that is well-intended and take it as a direct assault. Whenever someone else questions our perspective it can cause personal disbelief. Criticism may cause our mental and emotional state to be thrown down – although the situation isn't an attack, we can take it as one and defend ourselves because we see the criticism as a negative appraisal. For some of us it can be hard to take because we are compelled to react defensively. Sensitivity to criticism (good or bad) can cause us to do damage to our own character. When we can learn how to take these interactions and respond to them calmly, we will be less likely to assume that it is an implication toward our abilities.

How Sensitivity to Criticism Becomes Unhealthy

When we are unable to handle these types of responses with other people there might be another issue that we're fighting. Avoiding learning how to respond accurately can harm both our ego and relationships. We are exposed to criticism in every environment; we hear it at work, around friends, with loved ones and in the presence of our family. While not all of it is good, we should still be able to handle the situations in a controlling manner so that we can make something good of the situation. If we take these words out of context and apply them to our self worth it can change the perception that we apply to our ability to please others. It can change the way that we feel about the person who made the remark. Even if the criticism wasn't for the intention of being harmful, it still doesn't resonate with us well. It's our responsibility to learn how to respond to the interactions accordingly so that we don't worsen the situation or ruin relationships with people we surround ourselves with.

Effects of Sensitivity to Criticism on Other Relationships

Part of being in a healthy relationship is knowing how to communicate with each other honestly. Being open about things is an important part of making sure that two people are happy in a family and in a relationship. If someone close to you criticizes you about something that stems from your personality or behavior it can feel hurtful because it seems like we are not reaching important standards. If we respond to this as a return attack or if we let it shape the way that we see others it can dilute any truth behind the statement. It's important to consider what the other person is saying so that we can remain flexible and fix something that can be improved. When we react aggressively toward these comments it can make us feel distant from ourselves and others.

When we learn how to deal with criticism in a mature manner we can approach it with an open mind. Being open promotes longevity and happiness with others. The person is more willing to change something about themselves so that they can maintain another person's happiness. None of us are perfect and we will always be able to improve in some areas of life. When we can take statements and use them we might be able to improve ourselves furthermore. Counseling can help us see the difference between good and bad criticism. By working with a therapist we'll be able to see whether or not we are responding accurately. The intentions of these remarks aren't to hurt our self esteem but help it; this gives us the opportunity to improve an element of who we are and become better.

How Therapy Can Help

It's important to recognize that being emotionally sensitive is normal – it doesn't imply that there is anything wrong with you or your perception. The purpose of therapy is to help you manage this sensitivity so that you can deal with it correctly when criticism is present. Knowing how to respond can help us in the long run. It can prevent us from reacting aggressively and taking confrontation the wrong way. We will be able to apply it to future scenarios and take words into consideration. A therapist can teach you how to respond to both bad and good criticism. If it is a direct attack you may have more of a reason to feel sensitive but you can still use strategies that help you cope with this situation the right way so that it doesn't change the way that you perceive yourself and your ability to grow.

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