No One Likes Criticism

Rich Habits

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When I was in college, I was a powerlifter with a group of guys in my local gym. One of the things about power lifting is that it is not just about being strong. You have to become a master technician. You have to master the fundamentals of technique. As a result, I became somewhat of an expert in technique in most aspects of weight lifting.

The other day I’m in my gym working on my triceps and a younger fellow gym rat came up to me after one of my triceps sets. He told me my technique was wrong. My inner ego reared its ugly head and I was an inch away from shutting him down. But thankfully, my Rich Habits training kicked in. I reminded myself that successful people are open-minded. So, I shut my mouth and listened to what he had to say. I even let him show me the correct technique on my next set.

We chatted for a few minutes after my set. It turns out he was the head of training for five gyms; a real master technician. He told me that he often tries to help people in the gym with their technique, but unfortunately most of the people he tries to help become defensive or even angry. He complimented me on being receptive to constructive criticism. When he was done, we exchanged names, shook hands and he went on his merry way. I had made a new friend in the gym.

Being open-minded is a habit of successful people. When you are open-minded you are receptive to new ideas. Being receptive to new ideas allows you to grow as an individual. And growth is the common denominator among all successful people.

But being open-minded is not easy. No one likes to be criticized. We become defensive when anyone points out something we are doing wrong. Our inner ego rears its ugly head.

When you allow your inner ego to control your behavior, you close your mind to new learning. When you are closed off to new learning, growth is impossible. Only by forging the open-minded Rich Habit is learning and growth possible.

Tom Corley is an accountant, financial planner and author of “Rich Kids: How to Raise Our Children to Be Happy and Successful in Life”, Effort-Less Wealth, Change Your Habits Change Your Life, Rich Habits Poor Habits and “Rich Habits: The Daily Success Habits of Wealthy Individuals.”



  1. Sherry on September 7, 2023 at 10:27 AM

    Nice! You are right NO one likes it, but we all need it. You can learn from every aspect of your life something new from someone. We must keep an open mind and learn to listen to the other person.

  2. Maria Rossoto on September 7, 2023 at 2:24 PM

    That’s a great example, thank you! I actually like it when someone gives me criticism, unless the message is delivered in an unfriendly way or in the spirit of superiority. It’s too easy to dismiss criticism when the delivery is unkind. I’ll work on it, though, thanks!