You must not fool yourself- and you are the easiest person to fool.
This past Tuesday, I asked my classroom assistant to give me some feedback on my teaching. You may remember that I have a class of 15 fourth graders, and Tuesday was our first session. Marta emailed me back and had only positive things to say 🙂 I appreciated the feedback, but there were several things I did that, to me, didn’t work so well. Maybe, since she doesn’t know me that well, she was a little apprehensive about bringing them up.
In order for feedback to be successful, it has to be the truth. It can’t just be what the person thinks you want to hear. They have to be comfortable enough with you to speak the truth (in love). That’s not always easy, but oh so important.
If we really want to improve, we have to be open to feedback. In fact, I would suggest we invite it. Because we can’t see ourselves the way others do, we need to hear from them from time to time. How many people do we know who are their own worst enemies? I can name quite a few.
By opening up to feedback, we can become our best selves. Here’s some suggestions on opening ourselves up to listening to what others have to say about us.
If the feedback is negative, most of the time we will deny it. But sometimes the truth hurts. Take time to mull over what the person said. Upon reflection, you’ll generally find some truth in what they said.
Treat feedback as a gift. Realize that the person is only trying to help you grow.
If you don’t have a clue about what they’re saying, ask for some examples.
In the end, unless you become aware of a problem, you can’t correct it.
I was talking to a young adult a couple of days ago about friendships. I mentioned the importance of always having one or two friends who you can confide in. At the same time, hopefully these people will care enough about you that they will gently point out the areas in which you need some improvement. Don’t blow it off, but reflect upon what they say.
Of course, I need to be open to any feedback you may want to give me about my blogging. I’m still very new at this, and I wish I could devote a whole lot more time to it. Maybe one day. In the meantime, let me know what I can do to make it better 🙂
Feedback leads to transformation. It’s about making all things new.