5 Characteristics of Highly Critical People

Lists seem to be popular in the great blogosphere so I decided to start my own section for various lists that pop up in my life. If you a church planter you are going to attract critics, it’s the nature of the call. The truth is that if you are a human being, and if you are reading this blog I assume you are, critics are inevitable. Now not all criticism is bad but telling the difference between the good and bad can be very difficult. In this list I will share some characteristics of the person you should look out for as offering bad criticism.

5 Characteristics of Highly Critical People

  1. They rarely, if ever, come to you with their issues.
  2. They rally others by poking past pain and resentment. It’s not enough that they have a problem with you. They have to build an army. They feel this helps justify their criticism. Many of the people they form ties with are people who already don’t like you for right or for wrong reasons. Birds of a feather…
  3. For maximum damage they tell their criticisms to people that will get the word back to you. What this does is use someone close to you as the one to deliver the harmful blow while granting them the “misunderstanding” plea if you should confront them.
  4. Name dropping. This is a great tactic where the critic tells you or someone else all the people who agree with them. It’s great because it causes you to second guess yourself as well as being nearly impossible to verify. Most will deny, whether true or not, that they ever said anything. This gives the critic a chance at a second blow by pointing out how none of the others are comfortable talking to you. Most of these people have broken off communication with you anyway.
  5. Isolation. Not from other critics mind you, just from those who like you or are at least objective. The only time they talk to these people is for items 3 and 4.

I am going to keep this a short list for fear of breaking my firm rule when it comes to dealing with these kinds of people. How do you deal with the highly critical people I’ve described above? Simple…don’t. Don’t waste one more second of your time. You have too many things wrong with you to focus on the one they don’t like. These critics have one agenda…to be right. You must remember that you also have an agenda…to please God and you don’t have to prove you’re right to do that.