I’m reading a book by Tony Robinson called Money Master the Game: 7 Simple Steps for Financial Freedom. I’ve only read about 10 or 15 pages, but in the acknowledgements there’s a quote by Aristotle that reads: “To avoid criticism say nothing, do nothing, be nothing.”
Read that quote again. “To avoid criticism say nothing, do nothing, be nothing.”
This quote in itself is very powerful for me. Reading that simple statement was a like a parting of the Red Sea for me. We are all so afraid of being criticized, that we don’t step out. We will be nothing if we do not accept and encourage criticism in life.
In order to be sincere you have to vulnerable and in order to be vulnerable you have to be open to criticism. You can’t be sincere without vulnerability without criticism. I truly believe that if you are not vulnerable, you are closed. There’s no middle ground.
There is a way to avoid criticism, of course. Hide from the critics. Do nothing to cause them to notice you. Don’t do anything. Don’t say anything. Don’t be anything that might cause them to go off on you. Be nothing. But, that just doesn’t sound like much of a life, does it?
Say something. Do something. Be something. Critics will criticize, after all, that’s what they do. Give those who are worthy some consideration, and ignore the comments of those who are unworthy. Learn to ignore harsh, unnecessary criticism. You must do what you were made to do.
Until this point, I’ve been so afraid of criticism that I didn’t allow myself to be vulnerable. The last two weeks I’ve had a mind boggling metamorphosis. I’ve gone from avoiding the criticism to “bring it on.” It’s eerily comforting and frightening at the same time.
“To avoid criticism say nothing, do nothing, be nothing.” I’m still not done digesting that statement. I encourage you to ponder on that quote and consider the criticisms you allow in your life. I hope you open yourself up to new experiences and do not be afraid of receiving feedback from the constructive critics in your life.