February 13th, 2014
12:38 PM ET
5 months ago

Clinton on taking criticism: 'Don't get dragged down'

(CNN) - Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gave some insight Thursday into how she deals with her critics–some of whom, she added, aren't all that bad.

Speaking at an event about women and girls, Clinton said "it's important to learn how to take criticism seriously, but not personally."

"And to do that you have to be willing to hear what others who are your critics are saying and to evaluate where they're coming from," she continued.

Clinton made her remarks during a New York forum with her daughter, Chelsea, and Melinda Gates.

While it's easy to dismiss criticism, she argued, there are some people who offer constructive advice.

"I mean, there's that old saying, 'Your critics can be your best friends,' if you listen to them and learn from them," she said. "But don't get dragged down by them."

Her comments come as she's considering another presidential bid, a decision that would almost certainly bring heavy waves of criticism from an already-forming opposition that wants to stop her from running.

Clinton reiterated that the best advice she's ever heard came from Eleanor Roosevelt in the 1920s, who said women in politics "should grow skin like a rhinoceros."

"I think there's some truth to that," she added.

Clinton has frequently invoked Roosevelt in the past. She's drawn some heat for joking she had imaginary conversations with the former first lady during difficult times–a mental exercise she wrote about writing in her 2003 memoir, Living History.

Thursday's event marked the launch of a new partnership between the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.


Filed under: 2016 • Hillary Clinton
soundoff (17 Responses)
  1. it must be said

    Speaking at an event about women and girls, Clinton said "it's important to learn how to take criticism seriously, but not personally."
    -–

    Very amusing coming from a person known to maintain an enemies list.... This woman is trying to hide who she really is.

    February 13, 2014 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  2. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Where's Our $24 Billion?

    However, Mrs. Clinton's critics on the right don't offer any constructive criticism.

    February 13, 2014 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  3. Fair is Fair

    "Speaking at an event about women and girls, Clinton said "it's important to learn how to take criticism seriously, but not personally."
    -------–
    Tell it to your ex-boss and his minions. Every time he's criticized, it's because "they're hating on him"... or worse.

    February 13, 2014 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  4. Alex

    That's great advice for women and girls! And she's clearly not letting the baseless charges from the right drag her down. She just keeps getting closer and closer to becoming our next President!

    February 13, 2014 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  5. Silence DoGood

    Here is a wise strong woman giving advice and encouragement to women. What could be wrong with that? This has been one of her personal goals for years of good work.

    I full well expect a diatribe of comments with unfounded conspiracy theory, her appearance, liberals in general, and ignorance of her successful career. It is a good thing she knows of what she speaks.

    February 13, 2014 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  6. Rick McDaniel

    You didn't expect criticism to make her think about her ideology, now did you?

    She will be the same ruthless, mean person, no matter what anyone says about her.

    February 13, 2014 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  7. Silence DoGood

    @Rick McDaniel "You didn't expect criticism to make her think about her ideology, now did you?"
    ---------–
    If this had been a conservative man, these same traits would be steadfast, strong, and committed. At what point during Ted Cruz's filibuster did he re-think his ideology?

    February 13, 2014 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  8. it must be asked

    When is this woman going to come clean on what she did for all those hours when her people were being attacked and killed in Benghazi? Over a year and a half later and she still hasn't told the truth. Why anybody would be interested in what this woman has to say is baffling. She was a major failure at the State Dept.

    February 13, 2014 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  9. Silence DoGood

    @it must be asked
    When is this woman going to come clean on what she did for all those hours when her people were being attacked and killed in Benghazi? Over a year and a half later and she still hasn't told the truth. Why anybody would be interested in what this woman has to say is baffling. She was a major failure at the State Dept.
    ------------
    Lack of evidence does not make a conspiracy. Hearings were done, transcripts are public. I would ask what evidence you have, but I bet Space Aliens took it from area 51.

    Benghazi – the new birth certificate.

    February 13, 2014 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  10. Sniffit

    "Over a year and a half later and she still hasn't told the truth."

    Over a year and a half and she still hasn't said what you wanted to hear.

    Yawn.

    February 13, 2014 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  11. John

    Those on the right hate Mrs. Clinton so much. That in and of itself is enough reason to vote for her. LOL.

    February 13, 2014 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  12. sonny chapman

    Instead of constant criticism, why Repubs. just focus on their IDEAS ?

    February 13, 2014 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  13. Dean

    Via Obama, the Democrats have lowered the bar so much that she's a shoe-in.

    February 13, 2014 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  14. The Elephant in the Room

    It will be a LONG, LONG time before the next woman comes along that is as experienced in so many roles and leadership venures as Hillary Clinton. She is running for President otherwise, she will be letting down ALL women of every political stripe.

    We need only look at the way women behave in Congress [far more collaboratively than the men] to see that Republican, Independent and Democratic women will rally around her canidacy for 2016. They can take pride that she is smart [Yale Law School], battle-hardened [Sec-of-State, 1995 Healthcare reform, pro-Iraq war hawkish] and been in or around wolrd & national affairs for more than 30 years.

    The best thing she can do for women & girls is too run and win.

    February 13, 2014 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  15. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Where's Our $24 Billion?

    it must be asked
    When is this woman going to come clean on what she did for all those hours when her people were being attacked and killed in Benghazi?
    ---------------------------------
    When George Bush admits he lied us into war.

    February 13, 2014 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  16. Thomas

    America will soon have a Queen !

    Clinton / Kerry 2016

    February 13, 2014 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  17. ????

    Perhaps Ms. Clinton will run on the U.S. foreign policy she established over the four years when she was Secretary of State,
    Errr..uh...the U.S. does not currently have a coherent foreign policy. Maybe running on that would not be such a great idea after all.

    February 13, 2014 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |