Getting Unlikely Advice from Your Enemies

As I have said before in another post, the hardest problems to solve involve problems about ourselves. Personal problems are hard to solve because they are personal and close to us. We can lose objectivity. It is hard to judge ourselves because sometime we just cannot believe we are capable of doing something or believing something. But often by just changing the way we think, we can start dealing with personal problem honestly and work towards finding a solution.
An Arab philosopher once said, "If you want to know your faults, listen to your enemies". Why do you think he said that? Because our true enemies constantly look for them! We often react to negative comments with well, more negativity.  Or it could be the other way. We may have been taught to reject all forms of negativity to the point of almost denying their existence. But in reality, negativity exists. That is what I got from Newton's Law. People say bad things for all sorts of reasons. They may be jealous of our success. There are others who are not satisfied with their own success that they feel by denying others it will enhance theirs. People use negativity as way of getting attention. It is not that they themselves are negative. They are merely using negativity as a means to gain attention. They may even want to be part of what we are doing or be part of our group and it is their way of drawing attention to themselves with the hope of being included.
A good way to approach negative comments is to first listen to the negative comments. Then repeat them to people you trust. This can be a  good friend or someone who has advised you in the past. This someone should be willing to tell you the truth no matter how bad it is. If you don't have either of them, look for yourself. Ask yourself "am I so and so?" Think of ways or events that it could be true. Be honest. Nobody is listening but yourself. If so, don't beat yourself up. Everybody makes mistakes. Now that you know what they are, isn't it easier to avoid them?
If you are still not sure or feel you can't judge yourself, try this: think of what a person like that would do. Think about someone has done that bad thing or has that negative trait. Give this person a name, imagine how the person looks like. Make him real. Now image that person having that fault. Now replace that person with yourself and image you doing the same thing. Now think, have you ever done that?

It is easy to become defensive. But listening to negative comments may yield information that you need to solve the problem. Nit pickers will always be a pain but they do take notice of everything, especially faults. They act like your enemies in that way. But don't think badly about them. They may just see something no one else sees. Reduce the pain by using them, making them useful. Seriously consider, even for a moment, their nitpicks. Form a reason to reject them or why the nitpick is insignificant. But don't dismiss it outright. Weigh the cost of addressing their nitpicks. That could be the truly acceptable rejection reason.
True nitpickers are doing so just to be a pain or rock the boat. By taking time to consider their views, you have made them useful to you. If they realize they no longer are a pain, they may stop to nitpick. Rocking the boat is no fun when others are enjoying you rocking the boat. So nitpicks who nitpick purely for it's sake tend to stop when it is no fun for them. Either way, whether you use their opinion or they quiet down, you win.