We like to think we’re open-minded and that we can take feedback. In reality, it’s difficult and we’re not good at it. We get defensive. If it’s a strongly held belief (or even loosely held in some cases), we immediately look for and identify reasons it’s not true. It can’t be true.
Sometimes it’s not true true. It could be true for the individual delivering the message. But maybe it’s not fact. But maybe it is. To be open-minded, you must form a habit of asking yourself “What if it’s true?” … and that’s where you start. You don’t attack the messenger. You don’t need to break down and cry. You have to detach yourself in the beginning. Once you assess, you’re welcome to release emotion. Emotion is vital. It needs a productive release, though. Not just release.
If it’s true then you now know. That’s the first step. Now you can improve. I have yet to meet someone who thinks they’re perfect. We all know we need to get better, but it seems we’re afraid to. Are we so harsh on ourselves that we’ve given up on improving? Maybe we’ve beaten up ourselves so much that when we get feedback from others we’re too raw to properly receive it?
Be kind to yourself. You’re doing better than you think. But not as great as you will. It’s a balance of gratitude for what you’ve become, but discontent that you still work hard enough to reach your potential.