Everyone's A Critic...

One would think that I'd be adept at receiving criticism, given the fact that I spend so much time criticizing myself. Sadly, no. Practice makes imperfect, it would seem. I guess the two are pretty closely linked.

Criticism affects me to the level that I tend to procrastinate and put off things that I want to/should be doing for fear of being met with a negative comment or critique. Criticism doesn't not even have to occur in order for it to deter me; perceived criticism and the threat of any potential criticism is probably even much worse of an issue for me. I know that it is a predisposed mindset that I need to get over, as it can seriously prevent or hinder my attempts at doing things such as speaking up, socializing/going out, changing a routine or stepping out of my comfort zone -- and then of course there's the big, traditional stressors such as dating and job interviews and the like. Luckily, I'm kinda stable right now...Not exactly satisfied, but stable.

I find criticism to be inherently confrontational, and when receiving it (or fearing that I may receive it) I get very visibly embarrassed and flustered: blushing, heart rate skyrockets...panic symptoms kick in. After instances in which I receive criticism of some kind, I often replay the things that led up to the negative comments or actions I received.
nonplussednonsense nonplussednonsense
26-30, M
8 Responses Jul 11, 2010

Well, it's possible -- just possible -- that I saw you join one day and said, "Dayum, THIS is a group I gotta join!" :) Yeah. I think that the criticism/perfectionism/anxiety troika are pretty interrelated. I imagine that if they got an apartment together, some "Three's Company" hijinks would take place, with the public collectively playing the role of Mr. Roper (or if you prefer, Mr. Furley).<br />
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Ok. So I'm in a slightly better mood today than I have been, hence the random inane comment that once was my hallmark. Yeah. I think perfectionism is something that we do have to work on. And so much of it does go hand-in-hand with the anxiety issues. Learning not to "sweat the small stuff" could do a lot for us.<br />
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As far as the slob/messy home thing... Um... no comment? :) <br />
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Actually, it depends on my mood. Right now I'm a degenerate slob, but hopefully good mood will hit soon and things will turn around. That's usually how it goes.

I saw you had posted in this group and I was like, Oh this is a group I gotta join...and wouldn't ya know it, I'm already a member hah. I guess I never really thought about the whole perfectionist thing playing into it, but that makes a lot of sense. It's often even just small things people say in passing that I'm sure they don't even really mean to be very harsh, but I just blow it way out of proportion in my head and dwell on it for like the next 15 minutes. Unfortunately, it sometimes leads to me having to fight off tears in public. This is definitely a weakness I've got to work on...a lot. And are you really a 'slob'/messy at home? I always preferred calling it 'organized chaos'. :)

Nice.<br />
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It's weird...I tolerate imperfection as long as its private. Like, I'm a degenerate slob in my home life, but the complete opposite in my other self...

Yay!! And it's actually quite an adorable mistake too :)<br />
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I was recently spending time with a cousin of mine, and a few things she said made me curious and led me to ask her if she is a perfectionist. Her answer made me laugh and proved that she isn't: "Yeah, sometimes." :P

haha :) <br />
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Well, it's a struggle, there's no way around it. But I'm going to let that error stay there. <br />
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People, can't you just love me for who I am?!?

I confess, I edited my above comment :) I laughed at myself while doing it too! I am also making myself deal with mistakes here and there, and letting them be, especially with my piano recordings. It does help I think. Sometimes when I play a recording, bracing for a horrible mistake I remember making, I don't even hear it on playback. If something I typed causes too much anxiety, I do correct it haha. Sigh... the tiny things that keep me from sleeping at night are truly ridiculous. Oh, and I didn't notice the mistake in your story until you mentioned it! :)

Hey there, karumbey. I'm glad to hear that you're feeling a bit more stable right now... I hope you've been doing well, haven't really seen you around too much lately.<br />
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But yeah, it definitely is a black and white thing. And perfectionism. Like, right now, just 2 minutes ago I went back and skimmed through what I wrote, and I noticed a glaring double negative in the 2nd paragraph: "Criticism doesn't not have to..." And it irked me a lot and I instantly thought i'd fix it, which is pretty normal I think, but I'm going to leave it in. A lot of people would take it out, even non-perfectionists, but this will be my little embrace of my mistakes. The things that I dread criticism of.<br />
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So I guess that's step 1 in kicking the habit. :)

Me too. I think there is a bit of black/white, perfectionism that plays into many of us who deal with this kind of anxiety. And I think you're right about self-criticism, in that it plays a big role in how we think the world is perceiving us. I am also a bit more stable right now, and learning to embrace the gray :) It's a hard habit to kick, especially when it is almost an automatic thought process, but recognizing it, and the detriment it causes us is the first important step.