How To Handle Criticism

One of the topics I feel passionately about as an entrepreneur is criticism: specifically, how to handle criticism. In fact, I feel so passionately about it that when I had the opportunity to talk with Richard Branson, I asked his advice on this very topic!

How does Richard Branson handle criticism?

When I asked Richard Branson how he handles criticism – because just like anyone doing big, bold things, he has of course received his fair share over the years – he said, “Sometimes it’s hard, but you’ve got to pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and start again.”

I couldn’t agree more!

The Fear of Criticism?

In my work with clients (helping them to grow their businesses and become “bigger and bolder” in business), I’ve learned that criticism – or the fear of criticism – can absolutely stop people in their tracks, keeping them from moving forward.

The fact is, you can’t avoid criticism. As you grow your business, step up and and step out, not everybody is going to like what you do.

So your ability to handle criticism is crucial.

When I first started out in business, I was really sensitive to criticism. Even someone unsubscribing from my list bothered me!

These days, I have a different perspective. I have the attitude that if I’m not attracting criticism, I’m not trying hard enough. In fact, I welcome criticism.

My favourite tips for handling criticism

Following are a few of my favorite tips for handling criticism – whether it is helpful or nasty!

  • Again, understand that you can’t avoid criticism. As I mentioned, it’s part of stepping up, stepping out and doing bigger, bolder things. So instead of dreading it, expect it. It WILL come.  Shift your perspective.
  • Instead of defending against criticism, welcome it and appreciate it. Consider it free “advice” to help you move onward and upward.
  • Start to be really aware of how and when YOU are criticizing others. When you point a finger at another person, you’re actually pointing a finger back at yourself. If you’re casting judgments on other leaders in your industry, those judgments will keep you stuck, because you’re essentially telling your subconscious you don’t want to be experience success the way those leaders have. But the thing is, even if they are doing things differently than how you would do them, they ARE successful for a reason. So don’t self-sabotage!

So there you have it! Don’t let criticism or the fear of criticism stop you from growing your business. Have the courage to step up, get out there, and make it happen.

Join the conversation

I’d love to hear from you below: What have you learned from other people’s criticism? Have you ever allowed criticism or the fear of it to stop you from taking action in your business? What happened?