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Thursday, April 4, 2013

Flying with my own advice

I have been conducting workshops about handling criticism with dignity and grace. I did the research. I compiled my notes and delivered a smart presentation. Then it happened. Right out of the blue I was criticized. 

I was completely caught off guard. I stood still for an entire weekend. I kept going over everything that I did and everything that I said trying to decode the misunderstanding. Yes, misunderstanding. Of course the person who delivered the message must have been mistaken. Right? 

I completely forgot, no that isn't true. I remembered everything from my workshop, but for some reason I just could not do any of it. So I sat all weekend stewing. On Monday, I had the opportunity to sit down to discuss the incident and it turns out that there really wasn't an incident. I wasted an entire weekend being miserable. 

So, just in case you are stronger than I am, here are some of my suggestions on how to handle criticism with dignity and grace.

Do not immediately react
take a DEEP breath
take time to evaluate what was said
Pull away from the situation and look at it without ego 
Consider the source-is this person being hones or just mean
It is okay to say, 'give me a minute to digest this'
If it is an email, walk away from it 

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