How to Accept Constructive Criticism and Improve Yourself

I wrote this for something else but decided I would rather share it on my blog so apologies if you have read it already.

I had an interesting day recently. I went to the Edinburgh Body and Soul Fair and listened to Dr David Hamilton. If you have not heard of him can I suggest you look him up. He speaks from both the spiritual and scientific sides and amazingly they both have the same outcomes. One of the things he spoke about was people who feel they have to be positive all the time. We are only human so of course we can feel down at times but do we criticise ourselves when we have a bad day? Do we feel we are letting ourselves and others down when we do not seem as positive as usual? I know that in the past I have thought like this but in the last couple of years I have changed my way of thinking. I now accept I am having an unsettled time and then move on from it. I often find myself looking back on whatever the situation was to see if I could learn anything from it too as we are always in learning mode.

Another thing he talked about was becoming more aware of who we really are. One way to do this is to take an elastic band and put it on your wrist. Every time you think something negative you need to swap it to the other hand. It has been found that even positive people can still need to swap it up to 21 times in an hour! It is all about becoming more self-aware and stopping these thoughts as they develop. I am going to try this out and see how I get on.

One of the things you often hear, especially from people that have lost their temper, is “You made me do it!” Have you ever said this to anyone? I caught myself out recently. I have 2 puppies that had just been neutered. As they are one of each sex I was having to separate them at times including the night time to help them heal. This one night the female would not settle and after the third time of coming down the stairs to settle her I found myself saying that she was making me angry as I was so tired. This was because I had received only 5 hours sleep the previous night. As soon as the words were out of my mouth I realised what I was saying so I apologised to her. It was me that had the problem in not having the patience to help her with the problem she had. She did not understand what was happening to her. Suddenly she was being kept away from her brother for the first time and could not cuddle into him. It did happen again but I coped better now that my self criticism had kicked in. I was aware it was my decision how to react to this situation and I chose from that time to have more patience. In a short time things changed and are now almost back to normal.

This came to me also in a conversation with a friend who teaches Toddler calm. How many times do people lose tempers with their children and then say the children know what they are doing or saying and are winding the parent up? My friend advised at toddler age the brain is not wired in the way parents think and the children do not have the control we attribute to them. It is up to the parents to accept that they have to change the way they react to certain situations to change the outcome. Getting mad at the children is not the answer!

Sometimes we cannot change the outcome so need to change the way we deal with the problem. For instance we may be planning an outdoor event and find it is going to rain. This is not something we can stop from happening so rather than going in a strop and cancelling the event,we can take all the steps we need to change things around such as getting more items under cover for the evening so the event can still be successful. It just needs us to change our mindset. What may have started out seeming as a disaster could turn out that people had more fun under cover. It would probably also made more people come together to help with the extra work involved.

It is really important for us to be aware that how we react to a situation is down to only us. Every emotion we have comes from us not the external situation. One of the biggest emotions we have at our disposal is self -love. A good way to increase this is to run a critical eye over the way you live your life and see what changes you may be able to make enabling you to love both yourself and your life even more. We can be our best critics but we should also be looking for all the things we are good at as well. There needs to be balance

Fill your life with gratitude for all the things you have that bring joy. Every morning when I wake and in the evening before I go to sleep I think of my family, animals, job, friends, and all the wonderful sights I get to see on a daily basis. I am lucky to live near the sea and to have wonderful green spaces around me where I can walk and listen to the birds singing. Before I made reiki a part of my life I would walk quickly to wherever I was going. Now I take my time and appreciate everything I see daily. It makes a much more fulfilling life, believe me. It’s amazing what you can see when you really look.

Homework for the week:- Set yourself a target of finding at least one thing to be grateful for every day. After that try every hour and see how much more lighthearted you feel by the end of the day.
You will find that the more you do this it will become automatic to see so much that you can be grateful for. Improve your life starting from today.

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