April 8

Criticizing… criticism.


I’m going to be hypocritical-ish and rant about one of the things I am most critical about – criticism. One of my biggest pet peeves in life is criticism. Not the useful, constructive kind – but the unnecessary, bully-like, pathetic jargon that offers no intrinsic value.

I usually put my see-no-evil-hear-no-evil blinders on in most cases – but sometimes some of the stuff I see and hear drives me bat-shit crazy. Whyyyyyyy do we not see how useless this is? I could easily seclude myself, and I do to a large degree, but as someone that enjoys being social and connecting with many, I often come across things that make me shake my head at humanity. Shame, shame.

criticism1If I had written this two plus years ago, I would have been the pot calling the kettle black.  One of my most successful past-times was offering up a critical analysis of people I didn’t even know. The more people that enjoyed it and found it entertaining, the more it pushed me to continue. In the end, it only elevated my ego and did not have any real service to my evolution as a human. They say you keep repeating the same mistake until you learn the lesson. Luckily, I did around the 104,957th time (give or take a few thousand).

The other day I logged into one of my social networking sites and the first thing I saw was photo prompting viewers to share their one word opinion of an over-weight woman wearing something that perhaps wasn’t the most flattering. Was it attractive by ‘societal standards’? No, probably not.

But, who cares?

Apparently many.

Thousands of people whose lives have been grossly affected by such a travesty.

OMG. Those courageous souls! Still offering up their own derogatory commentaries – even after they’ve had their eyeballs violated and are still graciously giving another few moments of time to weigh in – ON TOP of the ten seconds they just claimed they will never get back .

How generous!

It’s not limited to a random photo on a Twitter feed or a Facebook page – which I get is an (un)necessary evil, really. Media and celebrity gossip columns are great, too. This is where we get to ignore our own lives, utilize our degree in psychology and  provide endless opinions on someone else’s life – without even knowing the true person on the inside.

Part of life? Maybe. We certainly were not born with it though, so I can’t fully agree. Life is pretty short and I find it saddening how much time we – as humans – spend focusing on everyone else but ourselves.

Think about how awesome it would feel to know yourself just as well as you know the person you’re focusing on!

And for those that get the pleasures of unleashing the critiquing – please, tell me the secrets of having a mistake-free life? Humans are dying to know! (No pun intended).

The point is – it’s very easy to get involved in all the banter, especially if the subject is not something that fits your own views. The one thing I try to do is look for commonalities rather than differences. We aren’t that different. Beyond form, we’re all comprised of the same essence. Everyone is on the same journey from different starting points.

Knowing that, what’s to criticize?

Be mindful of the words you say. Next time you choose to chime in, ask yourself if your intentions come from a positive or negative motivation. Humans are the greatest mirrors for our own selves. What you criticize in one usually lies within your own self – and why would you want to bring yourself down?

Now that I’ve written an hypocritical, criticizing, opinionated piece on criticism… rant = over.