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Criticism and The Window Watchers

May 14, 2020

We live in a world that is full of criticism.  In these times it feels like everyone is attacking everyone.  Hate is fueling more hate.  Self-absorption and self-love are at it’s all time high.  It “feels” like everyone is only out for themselves and cannot see past themselves and their own “feelings”.  We also live in a time of social media.  One which can be used as a tool for detriment and tearing down or a tool for encouraging and lifting up.  I am guilty of using social media as both.  I am also guilty of criticism.  Criticism and judgement are my biggest weakness and one I continually have to work on. However, in this time of social media and cultural uncertainty it is all too easy to allow ourselves to get caught up in the current wave of hate and criticism.  It seems like everyone is finding fault in everyone else.  And unfortunately, social media has allowed us to create a false image of who we are.  Some people (a lot actually) spend more time protecting this false image than actually living life, and most of the time their lives does not even remotely resemble the image that they have tried so hard to create.  That is one of the most dangerous issues that I see with social media.  And with the younger ones who have always had social media, do they know the difference between 'posted life' vs 'real life'?  This is an area I have to check myself constantly on. So I ask myself...

Am I living the life that I post? 

And most importantly, I am a health educator, am I living the life that I teach?

When you are putting yourself out there in an honest way and moving forward, you will always have criticism from the window watchers.  And by window watchers, I mean the people who watch from the sidelines and criticize and throw stones at those that are doing and trying.  And now, we live in a very sensitive and judgmental time.  A time in which we have unfortunately been taught is overly concerned with feelings and making sure we do not make waves to hurt feelings.  A time in which we give participants trophies.  This is so wrong in all ways, for it is the hardships, hurt feelings and the striving to be better that develops ingenuity and character. Back in ‘the day’ you could say what was on your mind.  And if necessary, people even went so far as to physically fight (I don’t recommend, but I have to admit I think it might toughen some people up a bit- this is my sarcastic sense of humor by the way).  In the end, hopefully all was well, people shook hands, made up and that was it.  But these days, it ‘feels’ that everyone is so sensitive to their own needs that they do not have the capacity to see anyone else’s.  And therefore, criticism is at it’s all time high. 

So how do we know when to take criticism seriously, or when to just let it go?  I have taken a moment to write down some thoughts on this issue.  It helped me, so I am sharing in hopes it helps you when you feel attacked by criticism.  Write these down and answer them.  It will help you sort things out and you can choose to either rectify or move on.

  1. Is the criticism valid? Do you need to correct what you have said or done?
  2. Who is doing the criticizing? Does their opinion truly matter to you or are they just a social media passerby?
  3. Do they have a right to criticize?
  4. What do the criticizer or criticizer’s do with their own life? Are they window watchers or are they doers? If they are window watchers, then move on – not worthy.  Never let the window watchers distract you from what you should be doing.   If they are the doers then perhaps it is time to do a serious heart check, correct or clarify and lastly rectify.
  5. Are the criticizer/s worth your time or thoughts?
  6. Did you truly do the right thing? Meaning, check your heart.  Was your heart in the right place to whatever offense you are being accused of?
  7. Is there anything you can do right now to remedy the problem?
  8. Are these people the same people who will criticize you no matter what you do?

 

So what is the answer to help cope and discern what the right thing to do is?  Try all of the above and then lastly anytime your thoughts go toward the criticizer/s or event immediately shift your focus to God.  Check your thoughts constantly, pray, meditate and seek God to calm your heart.  Then move forward, turn your focus on you and what God has called you to do.  Take care of yourself physically, mentally and spiritually.  Live the life that God has called you to live.  And when I say turn your focus on you and what God has for you, remember, that we are put here to serve so if you are truly doing God’s calling and you focus on you and your calling, then you are serving mankind in some way, shape or form.

We were meant to live peaceably.  But sometimes that is truly impossible.  There is nothing wrong with eliminating the window watchers from your life (removing them from your fb friends etc) and just be kind when or if you have to see them.  Remember, if you completed all the above, then their issues are only about them and has nothing to do with you.

Do not let the window watchers make you doubt yourself.  Let other people be responsible for their own feelings and you be responsible for yours.  That is what the window watchers do – they make you feel as if you are responsible for how they feel. Do not buy into this lie! 

If you are like me, you always want to make people happy and this will suck you in to other people’s issues big time and in turn, you will 'feel' responsible.  Learn to recognize when other people are trying to make you responsible for how they feel.  Let them own their feelings, and you own your feelings.  But do not, under any circumstance, try to take on ownership of their feelings!

Live your life the way you feel you are called to live and let others do the same.  And always remember, that if you are not moving forward in life then you will not be criticized, for the enemy will always place the window watchers in your way to deter you from what God has for you.  So criticism can be a good thing because if you are doing the right thing, there will always be criticism.  Recognize it and move forward.  You have a call on your life.  In Ayurveda we recognize this calling as individual doshas and even as vibrations.  If you are not living the way God created you, then the world is suffering because its vibrational tune is out of sync.  How do we heal the world? By living the way God created you to be.  Simple as that.  The world needs more you, more authenticity, goodness and honesty and open book lives.  Use your mistakes and issues to help others (and if you are moving forward, then you will make lots of mistakes and have issues).  And let’s each of us (including myself) try not to be a window watching criticizer. 

Hope this helps you in some way.

Blessings and Love.

Would you like to learn how to live a more 'Peaceful' life?  Ayurveda calls this Sattvic living.  If you are living the way you were created to live, then you are living your authentic, sattvic life.  If you feel out of sync then perhaps you might consider joining our membership.  You will learn how to find your dosha, how to gently change your life to line up with your natural way of being and in turn, live in rhythm with life.   A life full of balance and possibilities!  We will be launching soon, so sign up for our email to get updates at dragonflyayurveda.com.  

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