Updated: Dec 15, 2021
I can honestly say I used to SUCK at accepting criticism.
Constructive or not.
And to be honest it's something I still struggle with. I haven't gotten to the roots of it quite yet however I have been actively working on accepting criticism in whatever form it finds me.
With a simple thought process change I have been able to start accepting criticism, welcome or not, as FREE HELP.
I do the by trying to ignore the "vessel" and the delivery, when someone is criticizing me to try and instead figure out what point they are trying to make. Taking offence to the delivery mostly has to do with our conditioning and ego so try to really see the lesson you can learn from the interaction instead.
You can also ask yourself:
What is the root of the criticism? Is it a miscommunication or is there an actual problem that needs to be addressed?
What could you have done differently to avoid any breakdowns in communication?
If you are at fault, is an apology required? Are you able to see your faults and apologize authentically?
If an apology is given to you if you, are you able to forgive?
How can you change your processes to avoid repeating any issues?
What is the lesson you are supposed to learn from the interaction?
Changing this mindset will the way you accept criticism immensely!
It is easier to keep calm and take a deeper look when you can accept that there is usually a lesson that can be learned. Growth happens when you can stay away from anger and accept each situation as a chance to improve yourself. Make sure to thank the "vessel" for their input and let them know you appreciate them taking the time to address their concerns with you.
Don't get me wrong, I am not saying you have to do everything someone suggests and not everytime someone criticizes you, will they be right.
That's why it's important to ask the above questions. Most importantly remember every interaction is 50/50 even if it doesn't feel like it and there is always something you can work on to avoid negative outcomes. You never know, you might learn something super useful that could bring you relief or make something easier for you. Someone may also be bringing something to your attention that you did even realize was happening. Every interaction is a chance to improve.
Also remember if any situation becomes out of control you need to SHUT IT DOWN!
You know your limits and to ensure you maintain your professionalism, stay away from heated conversations whenever possible. You can always revisit the situation at a later date. Just ensure that if you choose to step away from a situation avoid placing blame. You can say something like "I am feeling overwhelmed with this situation and would like to revisit it at another date. I will let you know when I am ready" Try to give a time limit whenever possible to avoid potentially stonewalling someone which can create more unwanted tension. You can also choose to remove your energy completely by saying, "I am no longer available for this conversation and I would prefer to not talk about it any further" Agreeing to disagree allows for more constructive communication.
Last but not least, practice gratitude.
Always sincerely thank the person who shared their insight and then you can take it into consideration.