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7 Tips That’ll Help You Stop Taking Criticism So Personally

By | Stacey Lastoe |

At a past job, I’d estimate that at least once a week my favorite co-worker would gently place her hand on my shoulder and say, “You just can’t take anything she says personally.” She was the big bad boss, and I had no idea how to make an about-face and get on with my day whenever she offered feedback or even communicated with me about a project I was managing.

But, over time I realized that getting over it and moving on was my only chance of survival in that office. My inner mantra became “It’s not personal.” And every time I began to get rattled because of an email, or constructive criticism, or a backhanded compliment, I’d repeat the three words in my head until a deep calm overtook me.

It turns out that reacting poorly to constructive criticism is something a lot of us do, and when we regularly do it at work, it can be problematic. It’s one thing to fend off the occasional imposter syndrome that affects nearly all of us at one point or another; it can be another altogether to try and do good work when you’re dwelling on something in an unhealthy way.

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