When to Take Negative Feedback and When to Leave It

When to Take Negative Feedback and When to Leave It

Last month I wrote about positive feedback.  We all love it, but it can be hard to truly appreciate. This month - negative feedback.  No one loves it, and it can be even harder to accept.

In nature, or mechanics, "negative" feedback is designed to equalise.  A thermostat will turn off the heat when it reaches a certain temperature. Photosynthesis in plants which will speed up with increased levels of carbon dioxide.  It keeps things in balance.

For us, it tends to cause a shutdown.  We feel small, unworthy. It throws us off balance.

Believe Them The First Time

Believe Them The First Time

Compliments are hard for me. 

I really love positive feedback.  That's not the problem.  The problem I have is believing it.

People can rave about my coaching, tell me they love my writing or a talk I've done, and instead of taking it in the spirit in which it was offered, often I'll dismiss it - or go looking for the next one.  

It's as though I need another dose to affirm the first one was correct.

What Are You Trying to Prove?

What Are You Trying to Prove?

I've had to ask myself this question too many times to count. What is it exactly that I'm trying to prove?

And it always comes back to this.  Am I good enough? Yet?

I was having a conversation with my hairdresser/landscaper this morning about the need to prove ourselves.  She sports red painted toenails, shiny blonde hair and legs that seem to reach her neck.  Also, on her days not being a hairdresser, she lifts heavy rocks all day.  Somehow she pulls this off. Also, she admitted that it's really hard to be a feminist and to ask for help.  

Want to Feel Powerful?

Want to Feel Powerful?

We spend a lot of time thinking about what's wrong with us. We don't spend much time thinking about our strengths and what makes us amazing.  

We've learned that makes us seem arrogant or conceited. It also opens us to being whacked down like a tall poppy....

The Power in Pain

The Power in Pain

But suddenly you’re ripped into being alive. And life is pain, and life is suffering, and life is horror, but my god you’re alive and its spectacular. - Joseph Campbell

We're all afraid of pain. We have to override every natural instinct that tells us to run from it. Running from pain is the natural thing to do.

Sitting with pain, and learning from pain, is counter-intuitive. It feels …. painful and shitty and gut-wrenching and heart-breaking.  We don't like it. 

I tried for a long time to run from pain. That's what I knew. I had lots of coping mechanisms to help me.  Food restriction, control, and working myself into the ground - to name a few.