Constructive Criticism

Posted on: April 16, 2012

Defensiveness is a barrier. A barrier between average and greatness. The defenses I am referring to are those instincts that trigger your instant rebuddle when someone says “Maybe you could’ve done this differently.”

We all do it, raise our guard at a first hinting that we might have made an error. But what if we didn’t? What if our first instict was rather, to open our hearts and our minds to the option of change, to the option of self-improvement?

I am a glutton for change; it inspires me, excites me, betters me. So, naturally, I have a love/hate relationship with constructive criticism-but mostly love. I enjoy having my running form corrected, my eating habits analyzed, and my overall personality explained. Of course it doesn’t feel awesome to hear that someone thinks I am less than the best, but how could I strive to be my best self without a little external help? External forces light internal fires.

Try listening more carefully to the world around you, Is someone begging you to better yourself? Why not take their advice? Sometimes, even if you disagree with their criticisms or advice, you may learn something from the way in which it was presented. Often, I plow through my day in the most unobservant fashion. This is a self-given critisim, I need to slow down and take in my surroundings. This will consequentially allow me to tune in to the voices of others. Taking feedback is a beautiful thing.

As you walk outside today, notice the change in scenery from a month ago: it is green, fresh, and beautiful. Allow that enviormental transformation to spark willingness within you to transform in whatever may need some transformation. Maybe your academic practices need some help, maybe your workout could be ramped up, maybe you don’t feel your best due to poor nutrition. Living in contentment is fine if you want to be average, but I hope that you don’t.


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