Don't kick over the beehive

If you want to gather honey, don't kick over the beehive. - Dale Carnegie

That quote is from the first chapter of Dale Carnegie's classic book, How to Win Friends and Influence People published in 1936. He advises that we would be wise to avoid criticizing other people.

Carnegie: "I personally had to blunder through this old world for a third of a century before it even began to dawn upon me that ninety-nine times out of a hundred, no man ever criticizes himself for anything, no matter how wrong he may be."

"Criticism is futile because it puts a man on the defensive, and usually makes him strive to justify himself. Criticism is dangerous, because it wounds a man's precious pride, hurts his sence of importance, and arouses his resentment."


"Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain--and most fools do."

"But it takes character and self-control to be understanding and forgiving..."

"Instead of condemning people, let's try to understand them. Let's try to figure out why they do what they do. That's a lot more profitable and intriguing than criticism; and it breeds sympathy, tolerance, and kindness."

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Copyright Arthur de Leyssac, 2015, All Rights Reserved.