Criticism and Acceptance: Which One of Us Should Change?

Criticism and acceptance: learn how they affect relationships and what you can do about it

We choose between criticism and acceptance when things we don’t like happen.

Many of us in relationships want our partners to be different. It is so common for one mate to insist on helping their mate to become different. We do this so we will feel more comfortable.

A lot of couples fall into this habit. People want what they want and they do things so they will get what they want, including wanting their partners to become different.

But there is a catch to always wishing that our mate will change. When does this end? In fact, it doesn’t. If we don’t like some things, we will end up always wanting the things we don’t like to be different. And if we find success in changing one thing, well, then we will continue this practice until we get exhausted.

Acceptance is the Antidote to Criticism

Acceptance is the antidote for criticism and making our partner feel bad about themselves. Learn how to be reassuring and accepting like the couple pictured.

Another way to look at things is to approach them differently. And that is the question of whether you are willing to make a change. You see, our circumstances in life will always be new and different. We will like or dislike what comes at us.

This is just human. But when we live with someone we love, we don’t want to go around criticizing what they do or how they do things because we will end up pretty used up, and possibly missing our own lives.

Another way to live with someone is to learn that they are not you and did not grow up the way you did and probably have some very different ideas about how to do things and they might even think differently than you as well.

If we can ACCEPT that the one we love is very different from us then we have a chance to make a good life. See, we all want to be accepted for what we believe and how we act.

Criticism Makes Us Doubt Ourselves and Our Relationship

Criticism can leave us doubting ourselves like the man pictured.

When our beloved criticizes or blames us, we start to feel bad about ourselves and even wonder if we are even loved by them. This is common too. Another way is to know in the beginning that we love our person and they are incredibly different from us.

This does not mean we don’t have things in common. Of course, we have things in common. We love each other. They love us, we love them, and we share our lives together.

Do we think the same? No, we each think the way we think and it is not the same. Does that really matter? If you need agreement with who you are and what you believe, yes it matters, but that is the change I am inviting you to make.

Accepting Your Mate Instead Criticizing or Changing Them

Practicing acceptance instead of criticism can help you feel close like this couple.

Explore and understand your mate. Learn how they think about life and the world. It might surprise you. Be curious about them. They are a whole world unto themselves. Learn them.

And if you can do this without trying to change them, well you have built a relationship where both of you will not only survive, but you will thrive. We all want to be accepted for who we are, always. What we don’t want is to be put into someone else’s box so they will feel OK.

Ready to Communicate with Kindness in Your Relationship?

Read a Book About Relationships

'Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship.' A book by Linda Nusbaum.

Learn how to improve communication in your relationship, by reading Linda’s book, Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship. It might just help both of you feel more connected, aligned, and loved. Give it a read.

Get Couples Counseling

Come in for couples counseling. Couples counseling can help you and your loved one get the most out of your relationship. It'll equip you with coping strategies and tools for communication that can help you argue less and love more.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *