Criticism and how it has effected my life.

If you haven’t worked it out already, or are new round here – I am very blunt and to the point with my blogging. I am the same in everyday life. Personally, I  think if you want to get your point across, there needs to be an element of rawness so that the audience can understand exactly how certain things made you feel. Kind of like giving evidence in a court case; you can’t claim someone did something, without providing evidence. Otherwise it’s just a case of you making things up. What I say is real. For me to portray the life I have lived throughout my childhood and later years, I try not to mince my words and emotions.

I bottled up my feelings and emotions for well over 20 years. Now, after various therapy techniques (and several types of medication settling into my system), I have finally managed to break my guard down. I am now strong enough to say it how it is. If I want to laugh, I will laugh. If I want to cry, I will cry. I’m not ashamed to say it now. I cry and have cried a hell of a lot over the last 6 months. I’m approaching 36 and I am a man who cries. It’s fair to say I feel like I have a lot of catching up to do, in terms of shedding a tear or two. But let’s not go too much into this today.

If I think you are a ‘stroker of the serpent’, I will call you a ‘stroker of the serpent’. There is no watered down version to me anymore. I speak straight from the heart. I may offend people along the way – so what of it?

BUT (and there is a but), when it comes to taking criticism back – I don’t take it well. I never have done. I take it so personally and to heart. I know I shouldn’t, and you will probably be saying “well if you can’t take it, don’t give it out in the first place… blah blah blah…”

It all stems back to childhood memories again. There are many occasions when my own father would criticise me for something I have done wrong (or not to his taste more like!). For example, back when I played football, he would try and manage me from the touchline. If my manager instructed me to play a certain way, my father would tell me to do it different.  “Don’t listen to him, he doesn’t know what he’s talking about – Push up and mark him/ run down the wing this way or that, etc etc”…

Other examples of his “orders” would be like:

  • “Don’t play with your hair/ twist/ pull it out, you look like a fucking retard. You look stupid. What is wrong with you? You idiot.” (Later in life, I found out this is a symptom of extreme anxiety but he never tried to find out why I did it).
  • “Don’t do a certain piece of homework like that. Give it to me and I will do it for you” (He actually did a piece of my Art coursework because it wasn’t to his liking!).
  • “Why can’t you sit on a sofa properly? Why do you always slouch? Sit up straight you moron!” (Later in life, I found out this is because I had a slight curvature in the lower part of my spine, preventing me from sitting up straight).
  • The list goes on and on…

Sounds like good parenting I hear many of you say? Ok let’s put it another way.

The examples above were constant! They were given for anything and everything I did. It was relentless and for all of my younger years, or while I still lived at home at least. And my parents wonder why I always went straight to my bedroom when I got home? After years and years of this “critique” it ground me down into the earth we walk on. Until I literally had nothing left. It literally destroyed my soul.

The thing is, my parents had the nerve to wonder why I was always angry or argumentative. It was because when I got older, I had had enough of it. If my father told me to do something, I would tell him where to go. If I didn’t want to do something, I didn’t. I didn’t want to do it because I didn’t want the criticism that came along with it. I didn’t want to be belittled or bullied. Bullied is a strong word and I don’t brand many people with this term. But this is exactly how I felt living in his shadow growing up. Bullied.

 


 

I guess criticism comes with the territory when it comes to blogging. Mind you saying that, it comes with more or less everything you say or do in the online world today.

If we want to succeed at the things we do, we have to be able to accept constructive criticism. ‘I’ need to accept criticism.

 

Note to self:   

Don’t take it personally. Don’t take it to heart. Don’t think that the person offering critique has it in for me, or has purposely set out to gun me down! 

Do value other people’s opinions or views (even if they are wrong!). Do take on board critique and use it to improve the task in hand. Do bite your tongue to stop you lashing out or turning it into a debate.

All these do’s and don’ts, are what I should have done in the past. But I was a child back then, and I was learning about life every day. We have to be able to live and learn. We have to make mistakes to enable us to learn from them!

This aside, I can’t go back in time. I can’t change the past. But I can change the future and map it out in a way I am able to control.


 

Something I said in my last post was highlighted by a guy I know via Twitter. Just to clear this up first, he is a good guy and this is in no way me pointing the finger at him or moaning because he provided ‘critique’. I am certainly not blaming him for the crap week I had after publishing it. That was due to a mixture of events that lead to my anxiety levels going through the roof again.

For a few days it cast a shadow over me and I started to criticise myself hard! I had my father’s voice ringing in my head, saying what I mentioned earlier and repeating himself again and again. It brought a stop to my blogging. I managed to keep up to date with my Instagram but even those posts I was reading/watching, again and again. Even work related events, raised major doubts and negativity. 


 

A week has passed and I have woken up feeling a bit more alive. A bit more determined to crack on and finish the blog update above. A bit more focused on pushing this illness to one side, and carrying on with my life again. 

It will sometimes be able to knock me down. It will sometimes kick me square in the balls again. It will hurt me. It will effect my mental state of mind. 

But, and there is a big but

I will have the last word in this matter. What I say goes. You can knock me back temporarily.

But right now I am saying “fuck you anxiety and depression!”



 

Thank you so much for reading. If you get this far and you’ve enjoyed it, please give it a like and follow my page. Would love to hear from people who can relate to my posts. Together we can fight our problems!

I will update again soon.

You can also find me on my social media accounts linked to the page. 

 

 

3 comments

  1. Interesting post here Friend. We all have some level of frustration that is similar to what you describe in this post. You see, no matter the situation, I am sure that God can help. He helps us heal, he helps us let go, he makes us better. When you feel down or do not feel too good, just pray. God is with you. Stay blessed 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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