This topic is close to my heart. Why? I used to be very sensitive. I used to get upset easily. When people criticized me, I had this urge to fight back. I had this urge to speak up for myself. I had the urge to say “F*&^ off.” – I know it sounded ridiculous. It really was.
I took my work personally. When other people criticized my job, I became fed up. However, after I met my godfather in 2014, I changed. Instead of taking things personally, I looked at other people’s feedback as a way for me to invest more in my business and education.
• When one customer told me that I needed to improve my customer experience, I asked her a specific context on why she had the urge to give me the feedback.
• When one partner told me that I shouldn’t just ask him to promote my product every time I need him, I asked him about what I should do to improve my approach.
• When my wife told me that I stopped caring about her feelings, I asked my wife on a specific context or situation that made her feel unloved.
There is no judgment.
There is no blame game.
There is no argumentation.
Before I explain the four keys to dealing with criticism, there is something else I need to share with you, okay? – What is it?
There are “two” types of energy sources in the world:
A) The Yang energy. – It is the light. When you are one with the light, you will become bold, fearless, and full of life.
B) The Yin energy. – It is the darkness. When you are one with the Yin energy, you will have a lot of anger in you.
Why do you need to know these two types of energy sources? Well, when people are upset with you or criticize you, they are in the process to reduce the Yin energy inside them. – It also means that when you argue with the person that criticizes you, you will add the Yin energy to his or her soul. – It is how you make any person explosive or combative.
On the contrary, when you let the person that criticizes you keep blurring out all the Yin energy to the air, he or she will become calmer, happier, and feel heard. — The big question is, “What are the steps you need to do to handle criticism in your personal and professional life?”
Here are FOUR key steps to dealing with criticism:
STEP #1: Listen to the criticism with empathy.
Instead of getting all upset, you need to listen to every single feedback you receive from the person that criticizes you. – Some accusations may be right. Some claims might be false. Regardless, do not interrupt.
Your job is to say the word, “I see, or when I do X, you feel Y.” – Besides, you need to make sure that you look at the other person in the eyes. And, on a rare occasion, your eyeball looks to the side for one second. Then, look at the person’s eye again for 15 seconds.
Here is an example of how I did it:
“Henry, I don’t like this at all,” – Ms. Orange burst out on me.
“Okay, can you tell me what is wrong?” – I asked with empathy.
“You see, you should let me speak without interrupting me at all. It is very disrespectful,” – Ms. Orange replied. Her face was blushing as she was full of rage.
“I see. When I interrupt you, you feel disrespected,” – I replied.
“Yes, and, I really don’t like your teaching style at all. At a minimum, you should give us the formula on what we need to do without asking us to become your platinum client,” – Ms. Orange got annoyed.
“I see. When I didn’t give you the whole formula, you got upset,” – I replied.
“Yes, I wanted to learn more from you, but I can’t afford more time with you,” – Ms. Orange replied as she looked disappointed.
“I see. So, when you can’t learn more from me, you become upset,” – I replied.
*Ms. Orange became quiet and collected.*
My point is, “You don’t need to answer to criticism right away.” Instead, you let the other person shares his or her opinion of you openly. It also allows them to remove the Yin energy (A toxic energy) from their souls.
STEP #2: Acknowledge the person who is upset with you, especially when it is your fault.
When you have removed some of the Yin energy from their souls, you are going to inject the person who is upset with you, the Yang energy (A positive energy). – How do you add Yang energy to their souls?
A.You compliment them. – When you praise someone, you create a new frame of reality for a person who is upset with you. I refer this as breaking the pattern. (I.e., Before I answer your question, I want to say that you look great today. I am proud that you tell me how you honestly feel. It is honorable to me.)
B. You acknowledge them. – A lot of time, many of the accusation about you are faulty. However, you must remember that it is not what you say; it is all about how you make other people feel. So, instead of saying things like “What you told me were not true”, you are going to tell the others person that you feel horrible that your words make them feel that way.”
C. You don’t share your thought during this process. – You may disagree with what he or she said about you, your job is to reduce the Yin energy from his or her body. It means that you should NEVER try to defend yourself regardless.
STEP #3: Elevate the person that criticizes you.
Once you have removed the Yin energy and add the positive energy into his mind, body, and spirit, your job is elevating the person that criticizes you further. – It is the skill you must use in any conflicts situation. Why is that?
Well, every leader knows that you are the first person to arrive and you are the last person to leave. What does it mean? When you look at the context, it can say that you work first and you leave the company last. – It can be true. However, another meaning to this quote is, “As a leader, you are the least important figure in your life.”
• In your family, your spouse is the most important person in your life. – Happy spouse, Happy Life.
• With your children, the growth of your children is the most important things you need to concentrate on.
• In your company, the well being of your customers and employee are the most important thing in your business.
• In your personal life, your health and wellness are the most critical fundamental you need to focus on.
• In your relationship with others, the great feelings of others are the fundamentals of a great relationship.
Every single day, you strive to elevate other people around you. – It is the critical fundamental you must use to live a fulfilling life. And, you keep lifting other people for the rest of your life. Why is that?
Well, the fundamental of life is to “give.” When you focus on giving, you are building a strong foundation for growth. – You can start out by giving your vibrant smile to everyone around you.
The next questions are, “What if the other person is very toxic?” and “What if all the accusation about you were faulty?”
STEP #4: Always remember that when you talk, you represent you. – And, never other people. Speak wisely from today’s forward.
When people criticize you or get upset with you, they may say things that are very hurtful. And, everything they said about you is what they feel from the interaction with you. – It can be true. It can be false.
What matter most is you listen with your ears and heart. If their accusations of you are a fault, you let it go. If their allegations of you are correct, you use the feedback as a way to improve YOU. – What I do know is,“Whatever it is that you say to others, you represent you. Speak wisely.”
You don’t have any right to represent others.
You don’t have any right to assume what other people think.
You don’t have any right to control their mouths. — What you do have control over is your own mouth.
“I really hate the way you price your offer, Henry,” – Mr. Orange blurred out at me.
“Okay?” – I responded.
“I think you need to make your coaching affordable for all of us,” – Mr. Orange get even more upset,” – Mr. Orange get even more annoyed.
“Okay?” – I responded.
“I think that’s very cruel of you, Henry,” – Mr. Orange responded.
“Well, thank you for your feedback. I really appreciate your feedback. Guys, please give Mr. Orange a round of applause for his courage to speak up, “ I responded.
If you look at the conversation above, I didn’t respond to Mr. Orange’s request. However, I did NOT ignore his feeling. You can tell that I praise his courage of speaking his mind to the audience. – I don’t have to agree with him, but I do have an obligation to elevate his mood.
The next question is, “Why didn’t you defend yourself, Henry?”
ANSWER: I don’t have to.
My words represent me. Other person’ words represent his feeling about me. And, of course, when I said things to make him or her upset, it was essential for me to apologize. In fact, here is an actual conversation that took place:
“Honey, I hate it when you take me for granted,” – My wife told me.
“Okay, can you tell me a specific situation where I took you for granted?” – I asked with a sincere face.
“Before I had to bed, you used to give me a message. However, in the past few days, I told you that my neck is very stiff, you didn’t do anything at all. And, after you ate your dinner, you simply got back to work instead of talking with me for a few minutes,” – My wife responded. I could see in her face she was upset.
“I see. So, when I didn’t give you a message, it made you upset as your neck is very stiff,” – I replied.
“Yes, it means that you don’t love me anymore,” – My wife replied.
“And, when I don’t talk to you for a few minutes after we ate dinner, it made you feel that I didn’t care about you,” – I replied.
“Yes, I wanted to talk to you, but you ignored me and focused on your work all the time,” – My wife replied.
“I am sorry, honey. It is my fault. Let me give you a message now. And, tell me about your day in your company,” – I replied.
*Within a few minutes, my wife became calm and girly again.*
And, if you look at the conversation above, my wife told me that I didn’t love her anymore. – Not true. All I did was acknowledging her feeling. My duty on resolving the conflict was to recognize and elevate my wife’s mood. It is as simple as that.
The question is, “How do you resolve conflict with others?” Please share with other limitless family members your thought on the comment below.
Regardless, I strongly recommend you to download my new e-book, “The Limitless Mindset” for free at http://thelimitlessmindset.com. It will show you how to unleash your power to fulfill your duty & mission in life.
Limitless For Life,
Author, Speaker, Limitless Potential Expert, Entrepreneur