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An Open Letter to My Critics

This morning I read this wonderful post from a man named Russ Hill. If you haven’t read any of his stuff, it is very well-written. His blog is here: www.russhillmedia.com.

We all have critics. Especially when we set lofty goals or dare to try something new. Even if you are just trying to express your feelings, there are people who are waiting to pounce and discredit everything you feel. I really enjoy the thoughts in the following letter:

An Open Letter to My Critics

by Russ Hill on March 25, 2013

The truth is you’ve existed as long as I have.

I didn’t realize you were there until my early teenage years.  It was then I began to hear your whisperings.

As I’ve gotten older you seem to have multiplied.  Like mosquitoes or scorpions do.

You’ve followed me wherever I’ve lived, studied, worked, worshiped, or played.

I’ve decided that for a brief moment I will quit ignoring you.  And speak directly to you.

Let me begin by saying two words: Thank you.

Thank you for helping me realize there are Critics and Creators.  And that I choose to Create.

I’ve struggled over the years to understand your objectives.  But the more I’ve heard your whisperings the more I’ve come to grasp why you do what you do.

And that leads me to the second thing I’d like to say to you: I’m sorry.

I wish so badly you could see things more positively.  Your world would be so much brighter.  So much more colorful.  So much happier.

I know you think you’re doing me a favor by pointing out my flaws or telling others about my weaknesses.

But there are so many problems with your approach.

Your work will never be done.  Because I have many flaws.  And I gave up faking perfection a long time ago.

Every time you speak I become more motivated.  You help me realize I’m making a difference.  That I’m connecting with someone or accomplishing something.

You’re silent only when I’m idle.

Watching you, I’ve come to understand that guessing the motives or intent of another is a fool’s game.

Your pointed words suggest you’ve never walked this path or worn these shoes.

Maybe you’re preoccupied with fairness.  Perhaps you’re worried my happiness and success mean I have escaped struggle, failure, and sadness.  When can we chat?

You have denounced my decisions for our team.  But have never asked about my sleepless nights of deliberation or considered how much I have to lose if I’m wrong.

When I show courage you see arrogance.

When I am simply sharing you accuse me of declaring.

When I have meant the best you have suspected the worst.

When it has been my responsibility to be decisive you have told others I’m divisive.

I’m grateful there aren’t many of you.

I realize that you mean me no harm.  Most of the time.

I wish you no harm.  Most of the time.

I forgive you because the truth I have discovered is: Many times I am you.

My own worst Critic.

I hope you are not aware I have children.  But then I realize if they are to accomplish anything in this life they must endure you.  I am already working hard to teach them how to ignore you.

The reality is your words and actions have had an impact.  I will admit you have caused me to second guess and retreat at times in my life.

But then I have examined your motives.

And my heart.

And decided to keep Creating.

If you like it, share it with your friends or someone who needs it by clicking on the buttons below! – Kris

13 comments

  1. For Real !!

    If I listened to others for their approval on anything I was doing ! It would have never been finished, if negativity surrounds you – stay Positive.

    ~ barskii ~

  2. been positve is the best thing for me ! I have done so may things that I myself cant believe it but it does happen ,when you are a positive person and stay away from those who are not ….

  3. Thank you for your ecouraging words each day. Life is hard. We can either follow your approach or whine and complain. I prefer tofollow your path.

  4. Kris – Terrific post. I think critics are people who are too scared to create. They are cowards who propel themselves upward by stomping on others. You called them all out. Thanks.

  5. “You’re silent only when I’m idle.”
    This is a very good reminder for me right now. I cannot express how grateful I feel to have found your post at this particular moment. Timing is beautiful.

  6. Right on. I have copied a few passages down and posted them in my room. Thanks for sharing.

  7. Thank you for these words, keep fighting the good fight, Believe.

  8. Perfectly said! Thank you for putting my feeling into words. Creators have no time for critics if they want to be happy and succeed.

  9. Thank you very much for sharing this… it’s a very deep, meaningful, and forgiving message; one that I certainly needed to “hear” today.

  10. Great message…. Like Paster Paula White states, “Words are very powerful, they bring life or death! Use them to lift yourself & others up instead of tearing down!” We need to lift each other up and stop tearing people down. There’s enough negativity in this world. We need more positive people to change this world.

  11. well said! Its so important to never, ever negative self talk, there are just so many other people who are willing to do it for you – job done, let them drown in criticism – it frees you up!!

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