Seek criticism, avoid flattery

Earlier this morning, I heard a homily where a priest mentioned that it’s better to be criticized than flattered. As someone who was overly criticized as a child, it surprised me that this statement resonated with me and so I wanted to spend a bit of time exploring why.

For starters, wasn’t the first sin in the history of mankind caused by a snake’s flattery? To get Adam and Eve thinking that they can become just like God by eating fruit from the tree of knowledge?

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a sucker for a compliment, but yet too many of them make me complacent. They make me feel like I arrived, which on earth is a lie. We don’t arrive until we are reunited with God in heaven.

The prime example is in my entrepreneurial journey. When I first started, I sought flattery and ran from criticism. Now, I ask for criticism, because I know that’s the only way to get better. When I get unfounded criticism, i.e., trolls, it’s going to be colossal compliment. That will mean that I am breaking the conformance mold.

I’m still waiting for this kind of applause:)

Good flattery comes from the joy and peace that we feel when we lead from the heart. From taking a step of faith and experiencing how God either makes up for the lack of our qualifications or takes away the disappointment when we fall flat on our face.

How do you view criticism? What would happen if you cherished criticism more than flattery?

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