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Stop Being So Offended

Tim Ferris once said, “If you're offended easily, you're a bad resource allocator. It's a waste of energy and attention, which is a greater sin than wasting time.” I love that quote since I think that the majority of people are offended way too easily. We live in a society where anything and everything could potentially offend someone.

Over the years, I have redefined my definition of success. I viewed success as accomplishing a great deal in the past, but now I don’t think about success that way. Yes, I do believe that living with purpose and fulfilling our passions is a big part of it, but more importantly, I think that we need to accomplish our goals while having inner-peace. 

With that said, it is impossible to have inner-peace while regularly being offended by what people say about us. I have thought long and hard about the topic of being offended, and I’ve pulled together some ideas to utilize criticism for maximum results. So, instead of allowing someone’s words to weigh you down, let critical people lift you up!

Thoughts regarding utilizing criticism for growth:

  1. What’s the motive? Once you've been criticized, take a brief second to calm yourself and decide if the individual criticizing you has a point. Maybe they know something that you don’t know and could be pointing out a considerable blind-spot that you need to fix. If that’s the case, there is no need to get frustrated over the person’s words. We can learn a ton from criticism. On the other hand, if the person confronting you is just trying to bash you, then you need to let it go. From a time management perspective, it is a complete and utter waste of time to dwell on the opinion of fools.

  2. Get good at filtering. One of the many realities of the world that we live in is there will always be detractors. Our planet is filled with critics. I coached a gentleman a few years ago that took digital criticism really hard. He would continuously be processing what people said about him on his Facebook page. Since he was a politician, he wanted to keep everyone happy. That’s where he went wrong. You can’t keep everyone happy! The more your influence grows, the more critics you will have. You have to get good at filtering out the noise of people that just want to tear you down.

  3. Ask the right question. Take a moment to process the criticism and ask yourself if you can use the information to get better. When you do this, it’s essential not to get offended by the criticism but to use it as an opportunity for self-growth. If what someone said about you has any truth to it and you know you need to change something, thank them. Not only is growing and changing good for you but by truly thanking your critic, they will be blown away.

It is important to recognize that the more you do, the more you will get criticized. You can allow it to break you down or use it to grow and become better. I recommend that you chose the latter.

-Matt Zaun

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