How we respond to criticism is key to exercising our freedom and expressing authentically in the world. Martin Luther King Jr’s ‘Letter from Birmingham Jail’ holds such wisdom for exercising freedom.
The letter itself exemplifies King exercising the freedom of his mind and ability to move others even while physically confined in a cell. And, within it, there are particular points that we can draw from to support our own liberation from whatever binds us.
In the opening of the letter he states, “Seldom, if ever, do I pause to answer criticism of my work and ideas. If I sought to answer all of the criticisms that cross my desk, my secretaries would be engaged in little else in the course of the day, and I would have no time for constructive work.”
This is such a golden nugget from a soul who was a wellspring of wisdom. Knowing how to handle criticism from within is critical to exercising spiritual and material freedom.
This half moon in Taurus, illuminated by the sun in Aquarius, is an excellent time to reflect upon your relationship with the inner and/or outer critic.
Taurus is a archetype that carries insecurity linked to the basic question “Am I doing it right?” Freedom loving Aquarius calls us outside of the box to consider what “right” really is in the first place.
Set aside a little time this week to look within for insight into how your relationship with critique may be stifling your own energy and spirits.
Is there someone in my life who criticizes me directly or indirectly?
How do I respond directly or indirectly?
Do I internalize their opinion of me in ways that undermine my confidence and zap my energy or am I able to let it go and keep going?
What is my relationship with the inner critic?
Do I criticize myself, if so, what are the kinds of things I say to myself?
Would I allow someone else to say these things?
Are there criticisms that are worth answering?
If so, what are the points in the criticism that I would benefit from when considering from different angles?
Keep these questions in mind as you move through the next week. When an inner or outer critique arises, use them to process and see what you learn.
I would love your comments and feedback if you use this practice.
I would be thrilled for you to join me for a Free Online Self-Mastery Session: Navigating Comments and Criticism: Actual and Feared, to assess how you can process comment and criticism to strengthen your resolutions and stay your course in 2018.
In this interactive self-mastery session we will explore:
Awareness of how you respond to comment or criticism: actual or anticipated.
Strategies to consider what you can learn from inner and outer critique.
How to turn criticism on its head and recommit to your your authentic path.