Jimmy Burgess, author of What Just Happened?: How To Bounce Back in Life so You Can Do More, Have More, And Be More says that Zig Ziglar was wrong?
What does he mean? Read his article below to find out.
Have you ever been hurt by criticism? Ever begun to doubt yourself after one critic’s remarks? What did you do with the criticism? When I was younger, criticism paralyzed me. I got angry. I let negative self-talk creep in. At times, I still do. But, as I have matured, I have begun to learn how to turn the negativity of criticism into positive results and growth.
Zig Ziglar has been one of the most influential voices in my self-development. He has impacted my life and is one of the main reasons I am in the business I am in today. He said, “There has never been a statue erected to a critic.” This is not completely true. Charles Augustin Sainte Beuve is often described as the father of modern criticism and there was a statue erected of him. I understand what Zig was saying and implying, but I want to tell you why you should welcome criticism.
Sometimes critics get it right. Sometimes the criticism you receive is true. Sometimes a dissenting voice is what you need. Whenever you are criticized, evaluate the criticism. Make sure you are not missing something in your blind spot. We always have room for improvement. If you will resolve to remove your emotion (as much as possible) and search for ways to improve an area of criticism, then you will grow from the experience.
A research study found that a balance of praise and criticism is ideal. We didn’t really need a study to understand this, but I think we all realize that times have changed. We live in a world where every tee-ball participant gets a trophy. They don’t even keep score because no one wants to scar a five-year old child for life with the loss of a tee-ball game. We’ve become a society that chooses comfort over growth.
Too much criticism with no praise can be extremely destructive. On the other hand, too much praise with no criticism can be just as destructive. When someone lives without criticism they become complacent, and complacency consistently leads to ineffectiveness.
In order for a diamond to shine as brightly as it possibly can, it has to be cut numerous times. Understand that criticism is refining you into all that you were created to be. When you realize that a little criticism is healthy, then you will move to new levels of effectiveness.
Sometimes criticism is just plain wrong. Maybe it involves jealousy. Maybe it involves envy. Whatever the case might be, some criticism is incorrect. Use criticism to evaluate yourself. If, after evaluation, you still believe you are correct, then use that criticism to strengthen your resolve. Use the incorrect criticism as motivation to fuel your commitment to achievement.
Many times our motivation is to prove someone right. We always want to make our parents proud. I have achieved accomplishments because people encouraged me and I wanted to prove them right.
I have also used criticism to motivate myself to achievement. Many times the motivation to prove the critic wrong is more powerful than the motivation to prove the supporter right. Criticism can sometimes be the chip we need on our shoulders to put in that little bit of extra effort that leads to results.
If you will use unjustified criticism to solidify your commitment to achievement, you will benefit from the criticism.
If you have critics, be thankful. People who are making things happen are the ones who have critics. No one criticizes irrelevant people. If you are to become the person you were born and destined to become, you will face criticism. It’s not a matter of whether you will or will not. It’s a matter of whether you will use it to your advantage or to your demise.
Have critics hurt or helped you? In the comments below, share your experiences and how you have used criticism to make you better.
This is a guest post by Jimmy Burgess. He was a millionaire by 35, lost it all and ended up in bankruptcy. He bounced back quickly financially, but it was the bounce back that happened physically, relationally and spiritually that led him to write the book What Just Happened? How To Bounce Back In Life So You Can Do More, Have More, and Be More. You can also connect with Jimmy on Twitter.