A More Abundant, More Peaceful, Less Contentious, Happier Life-What to do When There are People in your Life that Constantly Criticize

Be yourself no matter what they say.” Sting

“I saw the mirror staring back at me and it told me I was a self machine.” Coco Sumner

How many people (smart people) do you know who constantly criticize? Every form of communication is a chance to instruct or critique. This is especially detrimental if it’s from a spouse and it is criticism directed at your children. How is it useful to make every conversation you have with your children into an exercise in critique or instruction?  There are many dysfunctional responses to stress that folks can develop over a lifetime, some of them like addiction, is whole-heartedly, decidedly, not pretty. There are many reasons why these folks criticize but one of the ugliest ones is: they want you to feel insecure. Most likely, it’s because they are insecure. They are afraid you’re not going to need them anymore. They think you’re going to hear all of the criticism and think, “wow, I’m a screw-up, I’m lucky to have this person in my life making me better.”


If it’s a supervisor at work, get to it before they do and before they ask you to. Play yourself down after you complete the assignment.

Never lie. Not only does it feel bad, but if  another person knows or suspects you’re lying, it will reverse the effects you are trying to create. Point something out that the other person is better at than you. Often people who make a habit of tearing other people down feel intensely competitive. It will help and make them feel like a winner.

Never mention you’re better at something than the other person unless it’s absolutely necessary. This rule speaks for itself.

When you make a mistake, admit it before anyone else can accuse you. It’s a good thing to do it anyway, but it also helps keep people from trying to tear you down.

Don’t be too self deprecating by going on and on about how imperfect you are, it will sound like you are trying to convince yourself. Be succinct and brief. People admire humility with class.

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