On Criticism

“Whatever you are, be a good one”

“Be so good that if anyone were to speak ill of you, nobody would believe them”

Two quotes I highly debated on putting in my High school senior yearbook page. Both were taken, and in being who I am, I didn’t want a quote that I thought other people had because I wanted to be different so I landed on quoting Oprah Winfrey instead. (No offense, O)

Anyway, I’m kind of glad I didn’t use those quotes. I’ve sort of gotten over the girl who wrote them down after I told her about them in Math class. Not because I’m mature – because I am, sort of – but because I think they’re just a little misleading.

I believe whatever you do in life, you should do it for good. However, you can’t control what people think of you, like, ever. Literally, you have almost, if not absolute no control over what people think or say or believe about you. People are extremely critical, and being critical, surprisingly, doesn’t always mean they’re right.

There are people who believe women shouldn’t have the right to vote. There are people who believe the Earth is literally flat. There are people who believe that Aliens rule the planet, secretly. There are people that believe blue cheese tastes good. I can go on.

Wether you are or know a lady who votes, agree with physics, hate the movie E.T., or realize that ranch should really be the only option to compliment buffalo flavoring – you are cause for criticism from like, a lot of people.

And as silly as that all sounds, it’s sort of a big deal. Because criticism about E.T. isn’t what keeps most of us up at night, it’s what we think people want us to look like at the beach, or what we think people want us to say on a date, or what we think people think we should be doing with our lives now that we’ve graduated, or what we think… Seriously, I could go on forever.

If you act, you get criticized. If you don’t act, you’re actually acting not to act. Criticized.

What I mean is, in this wonderful, ridiculous life, there isn’t much you can really count on. Criticism, however, you can. It’s always going to be there, no matter what you do, or who you are, or what you decide to eat. Its here, there, everywhere, and not going anywhere.

I think it’s time people stop being afraid of this, and start embracing it.

There’s always going to be somebody who doesn’t like some ebbing and flowing part of who you are. You literally could change all that you are to fit them, and still not be exempt from, say it with me criticism.

There are innate parts of life that garner decisions, beliefs, and actions. It’s kind of beautiful, if you think about it, the fact that nobody has the very same experience on this Earth that you do. Nobody is you, after all. And with that very fact, criticism, in its most silly, little way, is nothing but natural.

The minute I realized it wasn’t going away, was the moment I stopped being afraid of it after all.

Be a nice person, however you define it. Treat others the way you want to be treated – and if you don’t think that’s good enough, how about a little better. Whatever you do at night, make sure you feel good about the head you set down on your pillow.

When you fail, because you will every once in a while, cut yourself some slack. The world doesn’t do it enough.

Thinking of you

Catherine

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