I realised today that the way I react to criticism is different, depending on if it’s work-releated or me-related.
At work, I’m somehow able to separate my work from my identity as a person. So, if my boss picks me up on something at work, it’s all sweet. I make the required adjustments, and off I go on my merry way.
However, in the past 10 days, I have had two things said to me in criticism of me as a person. One person said I was mean. That actually confused and upset me. Firstly, because I don’t believe it to be true, and secondly, because this person now has “Paula is mean” as the frame through which she views me. (Side note: this is a bit of a weird situation in that this person thinks she knows me, but she really doesn’t know me at all).
I said above that I don’t believe I am mean. I can be if I need to (as can anyone), but I actually work hard to not be (or even appear) mean. As an introvert I know that sometimes I can come across as shy and abrupt, but I have spent a long time working on myself so that doesn’t happen as much as it once did.
The second thing happened today, where I was told that something I thought was hilarious was inappropriate. I’m still not sure why this has thrown me like it has – which is probably why I’m writing this now, instead of an overdue #OneWord365 update (which is in process….somewhere in my brain).
I don’t even think what I’m really pondering is what’s been said, but rather why it’s affecting me in the way it is (aah, circular thought patterns of introverts. FUN FUN FUN).
Perhaps the first instance bothered me because it’s directly connected to how I prefer to be perceived. But at the same time, that person isn’t really connected to me at all, so in the bigger picture, it doesn’t really carry much weight.
However, the second instance threw me a little more because it was from someone in my “inner circle”, and so their opinion of me carries much more weight.
Aah. It’s gonna be fun trying to get to sleep tonight.