The Only Reason Criticism Hurts

Ever wonder why criticism doesn’t always hurt?

If someone says you aren’t a good mother, but you believe you are a good mother, their words won’t hurt. On the other hand, if a part of you believes they’re right, you’ll create negative emotion.

Someone else’s words can never hurt your feelings. Words are completely neutral until we have a thought about them. Other people don’t create our feelings, our thoughts do.

When we hear words that line up with a doubt or criticism we already have about ourselves, we are more likely to choose a thought that creates hurt for ourselves. When we hear words that don’t line up at all with our self-image or experience, we let them roll off.

Imagine this… you’re wearing blue jeans and a white shirt. Someone comes up to you and says, “That is such an unflattering dress.” Your feelings wouldn’t be hurt, would they? You would assume that person is confused. But if they say, “Those jeans are not a good cut for you,” and you’re already unhappy with the shape of your body… well, here come the hurt feelings, right?

Words alone aren’t painful until we allow them to be. They become hurtful when we decide to let them hurt us.

Are you struggling with hurt over someone else’s words? I can help. Schedule a free mini-session here.

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