Don’t Criticize or Condemn


Today I would like to talk about Chapter 1 in the book “How to win friends and influence people.”

The theme of the chapter is Don’t criticize or condemn other people.

Let’s take a look at how you train a dog.  Do we train a dog by punishing it for bad behaviors?  No.  When you want to train a dog, they will learn faster if your reward good behaviors.

The same is true for people.  We need to praise or admire someone when they do good, not criticize them when they do bad.  You see criticism is like homing pigeons, they always return home.  When you criticize people, those criticisms always find a way to come back around and bite you.  Would you rather have praise and admiration come back around to you, or criticisms?

When you criticize someone, you hurt their pride, their sense of importance, and you may even cause resentment between you and them.  This criticism might put them on the defensive and make them justify or explain the reason behind their behavior.  Everyone can rationalize their behavior, but that doesn’t make that behavior right or wrong.  To them their behavior might be right, and to you it might be wrong.  In the end, who is right?

Hans Selye said, “As much as we thirst for approval, we dread condemnation.  Let’s remember not to criticize or condemn anyone, and instead let’s look inward and see what we can do to better ourselves. Maybe we are the ones that are wrong, and when we fix ourselves then everything will work out.  The Bible says, “How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take out the speck that is in your eye,’ when you yourself do not see the log that is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take out the speck that is in your brother’s eye.”

Remember the analogy of the dog.  They love praise, not punishment.  So always praise or edify someone and not condemn or criticize.  If you find yourself wanting to criticize, first look inside yourself, and I’m sure the situation will somehow work itself out.


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