Feedback It’s the Breakfast of Champions.
Yesterday I got some feedback. It wasn’t the feedback I wanted. It came in the form of a four line email from a literary agent. It was short and sweet, “We do not feel we are the right agency to represent your manuscript.” As I stared at the email my eyes teared up with disappointment. I know; I cry a lot. I felt a little short of breath, as if I’d been sucker punched.
Then after staring at the email for far longer than I care to admit, I started to think about how hard it is to stay open, flexible. I admitted that being vulnerable, seeking input, counsel and training is humbling. I started to think about how little, I truly know. And then I realized I’ve become a science project for personal flexibility. You see, I use to be as rigid and as control freakish as they come. I don’t know why, blame it on birth order or if that doesn’t work for you, blame it on my faulty ass belief that PERFECTION was the goal, that I was my performance. If you are what you do, you need to be right. Any feedback to the contrary is strictly ignored For goodness sake, what else was there, who would I be if I wasn’t right, good, achieving, perfect and performing? Geez! That was then, thankfully this is now.
Being flexible and open is not natural to me. I’m a work in progress in regards to feedback and flexibility and I’m a little embarrassed to admit had my habitual inflexibility, closed mindedness and controlling nature not gotten so dang painful I don’t know if I would have embraced feedback and input like it’s Brad Pitt. Like I embrace it today.
Feedback is the knowledge and input that has the potential to influence future outcomes and the quality of our lives. Information that can enhance, alter, correct and improve anything and everything we care about.
If you’re like me there are days that you too feel like the little girl in the photo above and maybe you even go a step further and stick your tongue out and chant, “Na, Na, Na, Na, Na, Na!”
Feedback conjures up all kinds of responses from us pride infested, unconscious humannoids. Some people respond as if they’ve just eaten an entire meat pizza. I’m gluten intolerant and a Vegetarian, so meat pizza is the highest form of food blasphemy my stomach can imagine. Feedback indigestion occurs whenever the input we receive from others is nauseating, hard for our inflexible ego’s to digest and process. Other times, we have an allergic reaction to feedback and break out in cold sweats and hives. Over time the allergy morphs into a full blown feedback intolerance in which our body is a constant state of readiness preparing feedback antibodies to fight any information that differs from our perspective, opinion or knowing.
There are many, many ways you and I respond to the input coming to us on a daily basis. But the questions I asked myself yesterday were : Do you want to get better? Do you want to learn? Do you want to improve, correct, alter or change? Do you want to practice openness and not knowing?
Slowly but surely I moved from feeling a tad bit nauseous to curious and here are a few questions to remind you. Feedback, it’s the breakfast of champions!
What matters to me? Am I getting feedback? Am I clear on my values and priorities?
What is my belief about feedback? Input? Advice?
Who have I given permission to speak into my life, advise me and my ventures?
What systems do I have in place to get input and feedback as to my impact and effect on others?
How open and receptive do others think, feel I am?
What is my normal reaction to input or knowledge that is not favorable, difficult or down right hard to hear?
Do I make it easy for people to tell me the truth? The whole truth? How?
When was the last time I asked for someones input?
How real are the conversations I am having in my life?
In my venture or at work is there a way for people to give me confidential feedback?
How important is it to me to review my impact and effect, the outcomes, results in all areas of my life: Relationships, Finances, Spirit, Health, Intellectual….etc
If you are covering your ears, closing your eyes or staying too busy to listen to feedback you are missing opportunities to improve, tweak, change, transform and become the fullest representation of you!
Feedback. It’s the breakfast of champions. Open up and commit to embracing input and feedback
And yes! I am still looking for a literary agent. But mostly I’m looking to embrace feedback!
Feedback- it’s making me better; not bitter!
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