It's tough to gauge, but I believe I'm doing a good job so far restraining myself from criticizing and complaining. I've been thoughtful when I want to complain to say it in a more conversational way, instead of "I'm ________" or "My _________ hurts" etc. (this isn't MadLibs though haha).
And as far as criticizing, I'm trying to find the balance between notifying somebody they did something wrong and criticizing. If I ask it in a nice way, for example, to please turn off the TV that was left on, is it still criticizing? I think it kind of is, but I need to re-read the chapter or think of a way that could make the person want to turn the TV off without me mentioning it... PERHAPS if I say something like: "Are you still watching TV?" Yeah, that sounds better to me, once I stop being annoyed that the person left the TV on haha. (just an example). Still working on chapter 1 over the weekend; my big test will be once I get back to my apartment.