Handling Criticism

People who are hypersensitive to criticism are often people-pleasers. For example, they hold the irrational belief, in the form of an unstated emotion: “Everyone must like me at all times.” Because of this false belief, held subconsciously and emotionally, they become threatened when someone questions them. It’s perceived as a threat because, “I must have disappointed this person in order for him/her to disagree with me — and that’s a catastrophe!” People resist criticism for other reasons, of course. Some people want to be right because to be wrong, in their minds, is to be stupid, and they don’t want to be stupid. They cannot conceive of a smart or capable person being wrong about something — or, if they can, “I should be different.” Others feel like they are only capable and smart if they have witnesses — and if someone has possibly witnessed an error, it’s the end of the world.