Looming for inspirational quotes about accepting criticism?
Accepting criticism is not something that anyone enjoys and seeks out.
However, if you look at people who are successful, vs. people who are often stuck, a deciding factor is often their willingness to listen to criticism and learn from it.
While not all criticism is valid, some surely is.
Decide what applies and learn from it, and let the rest go.
Look at the motivations of the person who is offering it to you.
Even if the message is not always delivered in the best manner, if the ultimate goal to keep you from making a mistake, or to help you to grow?
Even people who are simply hyper-critical, can speak kernels of truth sometimes.
Please read below some powerful thoughts on accepting criticism.
Also, check out our most popular quote article, a list of short inspirational quotes for daily wisdom.
See the rest of our quote database for even more inspirational ideas and thoughts.
Great and Inspiring Criticism Quotes
1. “He has a right to criticize who has a heart to help.” – Abraham Lincoln
2. “Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain and most fools do.” – Benjamin Franklin
3. “When virtues are pointed out first, flaws seem less insurmountable.” – Judith Martin
4. “Criticism is an indirect form of self-boasting.” – Emmet Fox
5. “I criticize by creation, not by finding fault.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
6. “When we speak evil of others, we generally condemn ourselves.” – Publius Syrus
7. “The critic has to educate the public; the artist has to educate the critic.” – Oscar Wilde
8. “When men speak ill of thee, live so as nobody may believe them.” – Plato
9. “Boredom, after all, is a form of criticism.” – Wendell Phillips
10. “If you have no will to change it, you have no right to criticize it.” – Mark Twain
11. “It is much more valuable to look for the strength in others. You can gain nothing by criticizing their imperfections.” – Daisaku Ikeda
If you’re enjoying these quotes, make sure to read our collection of imperfection quotes about embracing your flaws.
12. “The artist doesn’t have time to listen to the critics. The ones who want to be writers read the reviews, the ones who want to write don’t have the time to read reviews.” – William Faulkner
13. “If we judge ourselves only by our aspirations and everyone else only their conduct we shall soon reach a very false conclusion.” – Calvin Coolidge
14. “I have yet to find the man, however exalted his station, who did not do better work and put forth greater effort under a spirit of approval than under a spirit of criticism.” – Charles Schwab
15. “The trouble with most of us is that we’d rather be ruined by praise than saved by criticism.” – Norman Vincent Peale
16. “Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
17. “Don’t criticize what you don’t understand, son. You never walked in that man’s shoes.” – Elvis Presley
If you’re enjoying these quotes, you’ll love our collection of Elvis Presley quotes that illustrate the man behind the music we all know and love.
18. “Criticism, like rain, should be gentle enough to nourish a man’s growth without destroying his roots.” – Frank A. Clark
19. “People tend to criticize their spouse most loudly in the area where they themselves have the deepest emotional need.” – Gary Chapman
Criticism Quotes and How To Handle It
20. “Criticism is the disapproval of people, not for having faults, but having faults different from your own.” – Unknown
21. “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.
The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly.
So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.” – Theodore Roosevelt
22. “Before you go and criticize the younger generation, just remember who raised them.” – Unknown
23. “Who do you spend time with? Criticizers or encouragers? Surround yourself with those who believe in you. Your life is too important for anything less.” – Steve Goodier
24. “Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfills the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.” – Winston Churchill
25. “I have no right, by anything I do or say, to demean a human being in his own eyes. What matters is not what I think of him; it is what he thinks of himself. To undermine a man’s self-respect is a sin.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
26. “Do what you feel in your heart to be right – for you’ll be criticized anyway. You’ll be damned if you do, and damned if you don’t.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
27. “That was excellently observed’, say I, when I read a passage in an author, where his opinion agrees with mine. When we differ, there I pronounce him to be mistaken.” – Jonathan Swift
28. “Flatter me, and I may not believe you. Criticize me, and I may not like you. Ignore me, and I may not forgive you. Encourage me, and I will not forget you. Love me and I may be forced to love you.” – William Arthur Ward
29. “A man interrupted one of the Buddha’s lectures with a flood of abuse.
Buddha waited until he had finished and then asked him:
If a man offered a gift to another but the gift was declined, to whom would the gift belong?
To the one who offered it, said the man.
Then, said the Buddha, I decline to accept your abuse and request you to keep it for yourself.”
“Children need models rather than critics.” – Joseph Joubert
30. “We need very strong ears to hear ourselves judged frankly, and because there are few who can endure frank criticism without being stung by it, those who venture to criticize us perform a remarkable act of friendship, for to undertake to wound or offend a man for his own good is to have a healthy love for him.” – Michel de Montaigne
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Criticism Quotes and How To Respond to Them
31. “Don’t be distracted by criticism. Remember, the only taste of success some people have is when they take a bite out of you.” – Zig Ziglar
32. “If we judge ourselves only by our aspirations and everyone else only by their conduct, we shall soon reach a very false conclusion.” – Calvin Coolidge
33. “The final proof of greatness lies in being able to endure criticism without resentment.” – Elbert Hubbard
34. “We need very strong ears to hear ourselves judged frankly, and because there are few who can endure frank criticism without being stung by it, those who venture to criticize us perform a remarkable act of friendship, for to undertake to wound or offend a man for his own good is to have a healthy love for him.” – Michel de Montaigne
35. “Criticism is something we can avoid easily by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing.” – Aristotle
36. “Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain but it takes character and self-control to be understanding and forgiving.” – Dale Carnegie
37. “He who throws dirt always loses ground.” – Unknown
38. “You’re never as good as everyone tells you when you win, and you’re never as bad as they say when you lose.” – Lou Holtz
39. “One mustn’t criticize other people on grounds where he can’t stand perpendicular himself.” – Mark Twain
Insightful criticism quotes
40. “The pleasure of criticizing takes away from us the pleasure of being moved by some very fine things.” – Jean de La Bruyère
41. “You can’t let praise or criticisms get to you. It’s a weakness to get caught up in either one.” – John Wooden
42. “You can’t let praise or criticism get to you. It’s a weakness to get caught up in either one.” – John Wooden
43. “Most people have been brainwashed into believing that their job is to copyedit the world, not to design it.” – Seth Godin
44. “Flatter me, and I may not believe you. Criticize me, and I may not like you. Ignore me, and I may not forgive you. Encourage me, and I will not forget you. Love me, and I may be forced to love you.” – Norman Vincent Peale
45. “A creative life cannot be sustained by approval any more than it can be destroyed by criticism.” – Will Self
46. “It is a thing of no great difficulty to raise objections against another man’s oration–nay, it is very easy; but to produce a better in its place is a work extremely troublesome.” – Plutarch
47. “The individual must not merely wait and criticize, he must defend the cause the best he can. The fate of the world will be such as the world deserves.” – Albert Einstein
48. “Whatever you do, you need courage. Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. There are always difficulties arising that tempt you to believe your critics are right.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
49. “If we had no faults we should not take so much pleasure in noting those of others.” – François de La Rochefoucauld
50. “Don’t criticize what you don’t understand, son. You never walked in that man’s shoes.” – Elvis Presley
51. “Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong.” – Neil Gaiman
52. “Every human being is entitled to courtesy and consideration. Constructive criticism is not only to be expected but sought.” – Margaret Chase Smith
53. “If we are bold enough to point out problems, we must be brave enough to try to solve them.” – Robert Alan Silverstein
Criticism quotes to elevate your mind
54. “When we judge or criticize another person, it says nothing about that person; it merely says something about our own need to be critical.” – Unknown
55. “One of the criteria for national leadership should therefore be a talent for understanding, encouraging, and making constructive use of vigorous criticism.” – Carl Sagan
56. “Blame is safer than praise.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
57. “Don’t let compliments get to your head and don’t let criticism get to your heart.” – Lysa TerKeurst
58. “Those of us who shout the loudest about Americanism are all too frequently those who…ignore some of the basic principles of Americanism–the right to criticize, the right to hold unpopular beliefs, the right to protest, the right of independent thought.” – Margaret Chase Smith
59. “Think before you speak is criticism’s motto; speak before you think, creation’s.” – E. M. Forster
60. “Analyses of others are actually expressions of our own needs and values.” – Marshall Rosenberg
Criticism quotes to help you stay positive in the midst of a hater
61. “Don’t criticize them; they are just what we would be under similar circumstances.” – Abraham Lincoln
62. “Do what you feel in your heart to be right–for you’ll be criticized anyway. You’ll be damned if you do, and damned if you don’t.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
63. “Criticism, like rain, should be gentle enough to nourish a man’s growth without destroying his roots.” – Frank A. Clark
64. “Strength and growth come only through continuous effort and struggle.” – Napoleon Hill
65. “You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something sometime in your life.” – Winston Churchill
66. “If your heart acquires strength, you will be able to remove blemishes from others without thinking evil of them.” – Mohandas K. Gandhi
67. “My opinions and principles are subjects of just criticism.” – Victoria Woodhull
68. “What distinguishes modern art from the art of other ages is criticism.” – Octavio Paz
69. “Critics sometimes appear to be addressing themselves to works other than those I remember writing.” – Joyce Carol Oates
70. “If someone criticizes you, give them a compliment.” – Debasish Mridha
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Criticism quotes to inspire and teach
71. “Learn to see the difference between constructive and destructive criticism.” – Anonymous
72. “Appreciate the constructive; ignore the destructive.” – John Douglas
73. “I have already settled it for myself, so flattery and criticism go down the same drain and I am quite free.” – Georgia O’Keeffe
74. “How much easier it is to be critical than to be correct.” – Benjamin Disraeli
75. “Don’t criticize what you can’t understand.” – Bob Dylan
76. “Any fool can criticize, complain, and condemn–and most fools do. But it takes character and self-control to be understanding and forgiving.” – Dale Carnegie
77. “But instead of spending our lives running towards our dreams, we are often running away from a fear of failure or a fear of criticism.” – Eric Wright
78. “Concern over criticism clogs creativity.” – Duane Alan Hahn
79. “Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
80. “Criticism is an indirect form of self-boasting.” – Emmit Fox
81. “Think not those faithful who praise all thy words and actions; but those who kindly reprove thy faults.” – Socrates
Other criticism quotes and sayings
82. “A critic is a legless man who teaches running.” – Channing Pollock
83. “The pleasure we feel in criticizing robs us from being moved by very beautiful things.” – Jean De La Bruyere
84. “Interpretation is the revenge of the intellectual upon art.” – Susan Sontag
85. “People ask you for criticism, but they only want praise.” – W. Somerset Maugham
86. “I pay no attention to anybody’s praise or blame. I simply follow my own feelings.” – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
87. “The criminal is the creative artist; the detective only the critic.” – G.K. Chesterton
88. “I much prefer the sharpest criticism of a single intelligent man to the thoughtless approval of the masses.” – Johannes Kepler
89. “Take criticism, smash it into dust, add color & use it to paint breathtaking images of unicorns frolicking thru endless fields of greatness.” – Matthew Gray Gubler
90. “As a matter of fact, we are none of us above criticism; so let us bear with each other’s faults.” – L. Frank Baum
91. “Having the critics praise you is like having the hangman say you’ve got a pretty neck.” – Eli Wallach
92. “If you say something and reject any criticism, then your words truly meant to advise yourself.” – Toba Beta
93. “Criticism demands infinitely more culture than artistic creation.” – Pierre Bayard
Thought-provoking criticism quotes and sayings
94. “Often those that criticize others reveal what he himself lacks.” — Shannon L. Alder
95. “Pay no attention to what the critics say. A statue has never been erected in honor of a critic.” — Jean Sibelius
96. “Don’t waste your energy trying to change opinions…Do your thing, and don’t care if they like it.” — Tina Fey
97. “All that was great in the past was ridiculed, condemned, combated, suppressed–only to emerge all the more powerfully, all the more triumphantly from the struggle.” — Nikola Tesla
98. “The dread of criticism is the death of genius.” — William Gilmore Simms
99. “The motive behind criticism often determines its validity. Those who care criticize where necessary. Those who envy criticize the moment they think that they have found a weak spot.” — Criss Jami
100. “The greatest threat to freedom is the absence of criticism.” — Wole Soyinka
101. “I like criticism. It makes you strong.” — LeBron James
102. “I like constructive criticism from smart people.” — Prince
103. “If you live for the compliments, you’ll die by the criticism.” — Charlamagne tha God
Criticism Quotes To Help You Overcome It
104. “Critics are eunuchs at a gang bang.” — George Burns
105. “One does not have the right to criticize until he can do the same work without being criticized” ― Dr. Amit Abraham
106. “Critics can be your most important friend. I don’t read criticism of my stuff only because when it’s bad, it’s rough-and when it’s good, it’s not good enough.” — Kevin Bacon
107. “If you are not criticized, you may not be doing much.” — Donald Rumsfeld
108. “In literary criticism the critic has no choice but to make the victim of his attention into something the size and shape of himself.” ― John Steinbeck
109. “When critics disagree the artist is in accord with himself.” — Oscar Wilde
110. “Never answer a critic, unless he’s right.” — Bernard Baruch
111. “People who avoid all criticism fail. It’s destructive criticism we need to avoid, not criticism in all forms.” — Tim Ferriss
112. “If you have no critics you’ll likely have no success.” — Malcolm X
113. “Any critic is entitled to wrong judgments, of course. But certain lapses of judgment indicate the radical failure of an entire sensibility.”— Susan Sontag
How do you think these criticism quotes will help you?
While it might be difficult to hear and take in, let the hurt feelings and manner of the message go, and ask yourself what you can learn from it, if you can, and how it might make you even better at what you do.
This can be at work, in your relationships, or in anything that matters to you.
Take the message and not the messenger in many instances, and you will learn a great deal.
None of us is without room for improvement, and if we choose not to be defensive, to take the meaningful messages out, and to let the negative and hurt feelings go, we can only move closer toward success.
August 10, 2022 5:00 AM EST