In my last post, I wrote about a book about feedback, which includes thoughts about how people receive feedback and put it to use. Or not. It’s a subject I think about a lot.
As part of my own exercises in humility and personal growth, I keep track of how long it takes me to see the value of the feedback I have received. Last January, while I was in Santa Barbara finishing up my coaching certification, I got some feedback and it took me at least a couple of days to figure out my own reaction to the feedback. But today I understood the validity of some feedback I received in May, and I’m wondering, is this a personal record? Has it ever taken me five months to sort out why the feedback giver was right? Because, annoyingly, at some level they are always right.
Do you think that we get increasingly resistant to feedback as we get older? We’ve been doing something for a while and we think we’ve got it figured out, and we don’t see why we should pay attention to what others think. Or we trust our own judgment more than we trust others’ (there is research evidence for that) and so we think we always know better. Or we are simply getting cynical.
Whatever the reason, it was good to be reminded today of the Zen concept of beginner’s mind, to not lose the openness to experience of the novice, and that includes welcoming feedback. I am appropriately humbled.