How Do You Respond To Negative Feedback?

There was a post in the forum about being intimidating. It’s an important and interesting topic. What do you do with the feedback you get from others?

The general attitude voiced in that thread is that it is what it is. But look at this person on another thread – I’m Tired Of Rubbing People The Wrong Way.  Amazing, isn’t it?

I started blogging, seventeen years ago.  Someone told me at that time, they were terrified of me. They were afraid to call me. The man was negotiating with the head of Viacom at the time, and I’m scary?  I really had to start thinking about this. I have Libra.  I don’t want to terrify people.  I wondered what I was doing wrong.

This is when I really became aware of how the Mars Mercury conjunction works in my chart. It’s incredibly coarse. It is terrifying.  And check this out…

I know from experience and study and reading that when a person complains, there are at least ten others that say nothing. So when you’re told that you are scary or intimidating or mean or whatever, over and over and over, it makes sense you consider the feedback. I’m sure glad, I did!

People all over the world, call me for help. It’s satisfying one both ends. I would never have become successful, had I not considered the feedback this man offered me, and altered my expression.

There is another thread in the forum about Adults With Asperger’s. I am trying to learn how to interact with a man I know.  hmmm linked an article, written by a man (now deceased), who suffers with the disorder – Survival Guide For People With Asperger’s Syndrome. It’s totally fascinating.

It’s overwhelming, what a person like this must try to do to get along in the world. So why are so-called normal people so stubborn?

It seems to me, if you’re willing to work to get along with others, you’re going to be a lot more successful than the person who want others to work to get along with them.

Again, this is not personal to anyone. It’s meant to help.  Stubbornness has it’s place but it also has it’s shadow.  If everyone thinks a certain thing about you and you refuse to change yourself, you can’t expect people to change what they think about you.

And that’s a poor story, really.  The hero who gets nowhere on his journey!

How do you respond to negative feedback? What’s the astrology?


How Do You Respond To Negative Feedback? — 36 Comments

  1. I’ve never gotten negative feedback.

    I always do really well at work and I did so at school that’s why I have a Dr. before my name ?

  2. When I was younger, I was hypersensitive to it and would immediately change my colors to suit others’ needs. (Sun/Mercury in Cancer)

    However, I learned over time that many times people criticizing you has nothing to do with you as much as it does with they themselves. Think of when you’re stuck in traffic and stressed and cussing other people because you’re going to be late but if you’d just left the house 30 minutes earlier, you’d have a whole different mindset where you have plenty of time and people seem less of your enemy? Stress often causes people to lash out at others unfairly. So I’ve learned to separate. So, now when people criticize me strictly because they don’t like some aspect of me or if they’re projecting their own shadow, I just laugh it off. I can’t apologize for being me anymore nor for bringing up things that make you uncomfortable. Even though I may be a uncomfortable magnet and shiny mirror with a strong Lilith signature and Pluto in the 3rd, hitting almost everything, I’m not responsible for your feelings.

    However, if I’ve been obtuse or blatantly wrong, I will do everything in my power to become conscientious of that and try to improve upon it.

    • A lot of people feel similar – see the thread for evidence. But there is this other point of view. It’s my Libra, I guess, that wants to point it out.

      Also, Jupiter is in Libra now and a person can benefit from this kind of thing.

      • I understand what you mean Elsa. There’s a fine line of discrimination that has to take place and with Libra, balance. If I had a penny for every time somebody criticized me, I’d be very wealthy person, lol but also sick and sad if I internalized it all.

        Nowadays, for me at least, it gets filtered through a tremendous amount of thought before responding/reacting.

        Is this negative feedback deserved or undeserved?
        What’s the root of it?
        What’s going on in this person’s life, if I know them personally?
        Is this part of a larger trend of being as censored/offended as much as possible?
        Does this person appear visibly stressed and upset already?
        Is it a full moon, lol?

        I accept FULL responsibility if I’ve done wrong and will shift my mindset and behavior accordingly but there’s a level of having to respect whether that person’s feedback is merely destructive or constructive. That’s all. 🙂

  3. My Mars conjuncts my Mercury and MC in Libra. I have Sun conjunct Pluto in Scorpio. I have heard this comment before about being intimidating and altered my ways in time but I am not so sure it worked for the better since people still have different kind of comments. From me not being a Scorpio at all to being a bit intense to being Libra like to being just super nice to having an arrogant attitude and appearance. I really don’t think anyone criticizes me openly and freely at all. It’s not good in my world. How does this change of behavior actually work?

    • “How does this change of behavior actually work?”

      Personally speaking, I was aware that my writing is what comes across as confrontive, sharp, etc. I am phenomenally different in person. I’m super yin. So I started making videos.

      This changed people’s perceptions about me.

      I’ve also worked very hard to compensate for my natal MOUTH ON FIRE, particularly when I speak to people on the phone. No visual! But even in person…

      I attend a group, which I love. I have a lot to contribute but so do other people. So I consciously remind myself to STFU and listen.

      This issue is similar to another one I’ve confronted on this blog several times. People just don’t like to take advice. They want to make their own mistakes and not only that, they want to make them over and over and perhaps never stop making them.

      This has always seemed foolish to me…I’ve said so each and every time, for 15+ years. I just don’t understand the wisdom of ignoring advice from someone who clearly knows more than you do, has more experience, etc. at least not on a routine basis.

      I suppose it’s the Saturn in me. But when I tended bar as a teenager and those old men (WW2 soldiers) spoke, I listened to every word they said. It was so obvious to me, this was the smart thing to do. But this other way is very common now and as far as I’m concerned it’s one of the reasons people are so flippin’ stupid.

      • I love to hear advice! But only a few peoples advice resonates so loud and true that I actually have to take it. Saturn conjunct Uranus in Sag. – it has to be old wisdom and a totally fresh perspective at the same time. Intriguing too! And I love advice that slaps me hard… Most people just get angry… I have heard good advice only from older people though! Except from my Gemini girlfriend that is super wise and a great talker. She said that I have a bullshit proof mind and can see through people… But I would kill to contain my moves as smoothly and as unintimidating as she does. 🙂 I am super soft but look like a cold blooded snow queen and can never shake that entirely off. I tried hard too. Plus I used to cut people open with words since I was very little. Illustration: A two and a half year old girl says: “Would you get out of that bed already? All you do is lay there. My mother is never home because of you!” – to my grandmother, on her death bed, incurable cancer. And the list goes on… I see your point with the videos. Tnx for sharing this insight. But my appearance does not help.
        P.S. I never got offended by your blog writing! 😀

  4. I’m fine with criticism and suggestions on how to fix my life. I bristle at attacks on my character. I’ve lived through several of those. I’m a melancholy introvert. That won’t change. I do need to work on being more positive. I do need to get rid of all my baggage. I struggle with anger and bitterness. I’m always second guessing when it comes to social media, my blog and my books. I delete stuff constantly. I cannot change where I live right now. I cannot go out and get the kind of job I want. I’ve tried for years to make money from home. I read books and articles. I try really really hard to improve myself and my life. The main thing I’m working on right now is my attitude. I am striving on multiple levels.

  5. If it’s presented fairly and accurately, I’m fine w/ it. And, flavored w/ a bit of humor helps, too. But, if it’s more of a personal vendetta someone has against you or a favortism situation like I see a lot, I would say, I discount it completely. Like people can see the speck in someone else’s eye, but not the log in their own type of thing.

  6. Interesting this topic has been on my mind. I know someone prone to outburst long before this bipolar era. So hard to be around and often I have maligned her aggression but as of late I am remembering the compassion I had for her a long time ago. She actually is not well and neither was the environment she grew up in. It helps me get out of feeling so polarized,angry,unable to relate in anyway. Good topic for these days of reaction…:)

      • In case it seemed otherwise, Ann, my comment was independent from yours, directly above mine. I was just thinking of something, totally unrelated. It was random. I was reading an old post from years ago. That’s what prompted me to post the link. Not directed at you,at all.

        • And here’s another thing. Some people virtually never do this – project. They seem to have what they are doing vs what the other is doing, very well defined.

          This is noticeable to me and a great joy. Just talking to someone like this. It’s like looking at something in focus.

  7. I don’t really like being used as an example but I get your point Elsa. It might seem simple to an outside observer. Just change your behavior and you’ll get different results. But there’s beliefs and experiences that have to be sifted through. That’s the level I like to work on myself from. And that’s the level that I ask for advice from. Because my perspective is really the only that I can change. That’s what I’ve learned in my life and that’s what I’m working on. I’m looking at the roots, not the branches. Because I do want to get along with others. I do my best to. I bite my tongue all the time on here and in real life. I’m trying to get along right now even though I’m triggered. I don’t think anyone that knows me well would ever say that I don’t go to phenomenal lengths to have peace and harmony in every area of my life. Yes, society is hard for me. I’m aware it’s something inside of me that creates that. But I want to make sure I’m not just doing the right thing, but that I’m doing the right thing from the right place. Again, looking at the roots of the tree.

    • You’re not the example. I tried to make that clear. I used the entire thread as an example…plus it’s just a common view that is expressed. I used the other thread as an opposite example and the pdf as another example, far down the continuum.

      This really was not meant to be personal to you at all. It comes from stuff in the 1970’s like, “I’m okay, you’re okay.” I don’t know. It’s just not personal to you. Not at all. There’s no other way to say it. I think about this all the time…daily, because I work with people who think like this, daily. And I read memes that expouse this stuff, also daily.

        • I have had an honest to God realization about this! I’ll post something tomorrow about the details. It’s late here and I’ve had an intense couple days of self reflection. But I just wanted to apologize to you publicly Elsa for my defensiveness as soon as I could. I appreciate your message and you.

  8. I think if negative criticism happens all the time, and there is one common denominator, then the person might want to think about either changing some things, or just stop feeling so bad about it all the time (by ignoring it, etc).

    My experience, in seeing certain people I know who constantly complain about everything, is they are the common denominator.

    Just my thoughts.

  9. It depends who the feedback is coming from. If someone judges me without getting to know me or having an actual interaction, I may consider that feedback, but I won’t give it as much weight as if it were coming from someone who has spent time with me and gotten to know me. Otherwise they are judging a book by it’s cover, and their subjective feelings and impressions are just that – subjective. Ex. If someone says you’re acting like an a-hole, it’s possible you’re acting like an a-hole. It’s a behavior coming from you, it’s observable. If someone perceives you that way because of the way you look or because you don’t smile enough for their liking, and judges you, without having an actual interaction with you or gotten to know you, that’s a different story. Basically, the feedback should be founded on something more than just… ”but I feel”… if I’m to take it seriously. You’re just not going to be everyone’s cup of tea, no matter what you do.

  10. I don’t think I have swayed from this opinion. Sometimes it takes someone on the outside to throw up a nice full length mirror and show you what you look like. You may not like it. You may even want to resist it. But we don’t always see what we are sending out to the world. We have it in our head that we are right, and we are doing it right, and we are only being criticized.

    Yes, you’ll come across some hateful people that are just stupid from time to time. But, if things aren’t working and several people tell you the same thing maybe you can at least look at it and do a little autopsy work on yourself. I know I have to. I dig in my heels. It sometimes takes a stick of dynamite to blow me out of a position of resistance. And I believe my own bullshit sometimes until I know what I am doing isn’t working … then I still want to find a reason I am right.

    But, being human (I like to think I am above being human sometimes and I like to think I am as mighty as superman) I do make mistakes and it does take me a minute to recognize this.

    I was telling someone about something that was said to me some time back….and it hurt me initially. I didn’t talk to the person that said it for a few days and then I did. He said I wasn’t trying to hurt you, I was disagreeing with you about a side to yourself you don’t see clearly. A side I do happen to appreciate but you don’t want to recognize. When he put it like that I did open my eyes to a different reality.

    I do agree there are some real assholes out there that have no business commenting on anything about anyone…gossips and the like…but when I am trying to move through something that in the end might help me be a better and stronger version of myself I have no choice but to listen to my reviews. How else will I gain an clear perception of myself.

    For me I like to think I am trying to get better, and be better but there are times I don’t do things to accomplish this and I like to think that’s not true. This behavior does me no good and I cant get the result I am hoping for. So… I rely on another person to rattle my can from time to time. It may change me, it may not…but I feel like I am a little bit closer to getting it right when I accept the feedback. I don’t always have to agree with it, but when more than one person is telling me the same thing….I open my ears

  11. I also think that refusing to work with others or listen to them, not making efforts in this direction can expose you to unhealthy relationships.

    I have seen people that isolate themselves in their stubbornness when things don’t go their way and refuse to negotiate or work with others in order to move forward. And then, one ‘miracle’ person appears that handles them gently, gets under their skin and they start to build an exclusive relationship with just this one ‘miracle’ person. It may be a friend, a partner, a relative. Whether this ‘miracle’ person is well intended or not it doesn’t matter. It will be a lot of pressure for him/ her, because she will become like a second skin, needed for both professional and personal matters.

    There are cases when the ‘miracle’ person does not appear or suddenly disappears because of the pressure and the person is left again isolated, trapped in a ‘my way or the highway’ mind frame which will end up alienating everyone, even those that were supporters in the beginning. Being trapped alone in your head space can be a dangerous thing, even if you consider that head space to be brilliant.

  12. The book: ‘Non Violent Communication’ has some really good ways to resolve this kind of thing… which I agree is rampant these days. Active listening is a a great skill to diffuse tension. Using I statements rather than ‘you’! Its challenging and tricky not to get defensive when someone lays stuff on you… or misinterpret something I’ve said and take it the wrong way. (Cancer Sun = over sensitive)

    I try to remember that most people just want to be heard. And also, underneath a projection or a criticism is usually abut some other issue. Active listening…’sounds like you are frustrated… etc etc can be very helpful. Righteous indignation is not so helpful.

    I went through some big stuff with my sister last year while we were traveling together. She was projecting big time and I told her I felt she was judging me (she was). She got all upset and said I was judging her for judging me. LOL! She’s got strong Mars Moon and her Saturn Sun is directly on my Asc. In Scorpio! Help!

    So that night I prayed for clarity and had a vision of how wounded she was and how vulnerable she felt underneath (I saw her curled up in a fetal position) and had a huge wave of compassion come in and so I opened my heart and forgave her (after some processing) . The next day the energy totally shifted. Sometime confrontation just activates the ego… not always the best way forward.

    Of course we do have an underlying connection and love… not always the case.

  13. I tried to read the second topic – “Tired of rubbing people the wrong way” – but the links lands on the first topic, “Being intimidating”.

    I’m curious to read it. This subject, now expanded, is fascinating me. 🙂


      • Thank you Elsa! 🙂
        I really do, very much, enjoy that there are so many views here. And I often find some nugget of inspiration where I wouldn’t have expected. I skip a topic, and discover, later, that it included thoughts that I wish I’d read sooner. Or, someone who has written something I disagree with, later writes another thing that speaks to my heart of hearts. Life… funny what we discover.
        I very much value that this is a place where people can share – echange, & change or not – our thoughts. I agree with you, that Mercury is often underestimated in the importance of its role in our lives.
        (Libra, too, of course. 😉 )
        Thanks, hey?

  14. I was thinking about this last night; I recalled seeing the old Burger King commercials from the 1970’s.
    “Hold the pickle, hold the lettuce,
    Special orders don’t upset us,
    All we ask is that you let us,
    Serve it your way…”

    “Have it your way, have it your way…”

    They’re talking about a hamburger, not a life. Somehow people have come to believe they can put in their order for life and have it filled. Filled by WHO? And WHY?

    This is a false belief. It just is, even if people cut and past pics with words on them all over the internet, claiming you can have life your way, without compromise and don’t settle!

    If you wonder if I am right, just ask anyone with an illness, a dead child, their house destroyed in a fire or an earthquake, a person who lost a limb…and just any number of other things that happen to people, all the time, on a daily basis.

    Then think about someone who nothing has happened to, really, and there they are bitching about how life has not been served to them, their way. Is this not ludicrous?

    Here’s another angle…

    My husband was flipping the tv – I only saw 60 seconds of this. But the man was talking about a vision someone had, the earth was this little speck. Just a tiny, tiny speck in the universe.

    What if this is right? What if it it that insignificant and here each of us are, sitting on the speck, carrying on about how important we are; how we ought to have it our way.

    I don’t know about this idea, but I do know that life is not something you can control, as if it’s a whataburger. You’re part of a larger picture. The larger picture is going to win out, over time.

  15. It’s crazy that people hold strong to their belief that they can manifest their ordered life. In all its glory. I hear them say Namaste when they don’t understand what it even means.
    I just got my genetic profile report. Right. I could have controlled my grandparents and greatgreat GPS. Namaste, fairy dust and unicorns farting rainbows won’t change my diagnosis. Or theirs. We are a speck. Hold a dying baby or watch a young mother die..still breastfeeding.Ya think she chose that? Then STFU and go give something to the world. Then you will change.

  16. In answer to the question, I appreciate negative feedback because I like to view things from different perspectives. If it resonates with me that is great! Maybe one less puddle I will walk through. I will think on it, maybe run it by someone who loves me or someone I trust. That’s not the same as attacking though. That just bores me.

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