5 ways to use self-criticism to your advantage

We can all be a little hard on ourselves when things at work don’t go completely to plan. Your friends and family will tell you not to worry and to not blame yourself but what if you could use your self-criticism for the powers of productivity?

We’re not asking you to indulge in low-self esteem and sabotage yourself but rather flip the script on inevitable self-criticism. Rather than let them get you down, rethink your self-qualms and use them to your advantage by following the good advice of Chief Recruiting Officer Krisi Rossie O’Donnell at Inc.

1. Strive for improvement

Deep down you know you’re not your mistakes. You can be self-critical as long as you keep pushing to be better. Use your over-analytical abilities to figure out what you could have done to succeed and be sure to document it for the next time.

2. Dwelling on your mistakes can be positive

Maybe the word dwelling is too negative but a period of reflection is necessary. You’ll run the scenario through your head over and over so that when it comes to make a similar mistake, you will be so prepared for the outcome.

3. Taking a backseat can reveal new perspectives

Self-critical people often experience quiet days in the wake of a mistake which means you can start to hear what you missed when you were wrapped up in your work. Listening is one of the most important skills to have in a workplace. This is what O’Donnell says about using your ears: “There’s always room to improve and [self-critical people] want to hear other people’s suggestions on how to do so”.

4. Throw that ego out of the window

The likelihood is that if you’re a person who rides themselves pretty hard, your ego will either be non-existent or inflated beyond control. By constantly questioning your abilities and successes you’ll keep yourself grounded and keep laziness at bay.

5. Learn to embrace the failures

O’Donnell makes the incredibly poignant point that there is no perfect way to complete a task. Your over-active mind will ensure you make the right decisions, everything else is out of your hands: “You can run the right play and not get the touchdown, but you still ran the right play”. If you know you did good by yourself, the failures won’t feel so bitter.

What now?