Today is Day 13 of Live A Better Life in 30 Days Challenge.
Day 13 is about getting feedback from others for some external perspectives and to uncover our blind spots, so we gain new levels of knowledge/awareness about ourselves.
The task is not about pinpointing faults or pulling someone down; it’s about being a better person and being the best we can be. Others’ feedback is meant to be an agent to help us improve and grow.
The more we know about ourselves, our strengths and weaknesses, the better we can be.
What a great idea, I thought.
“But this is hard to do.” Here came my second thought right after.
Whom should I ask? Who will share honest, objective feedback and not sugar coated one? Do I put myself and other people in an awkward position?
Questions like that were popping up in my mind.
I could feel some resistance and fear.
I am not afraid of hearing negative feedback about myself. In fact I always welcome negative comments if they are offered in a constructive manner and with good intention.
I guess I am just a little bit uncomfortable bringing the topic up, opening up myself more, and putting people in an umcomfortable position.
I think I am an extrovert when it comes to talking with strangers or people who are not close to me.
Yesterday the weather was perfect. I took a walk around the lake in Wedgewood Park. I saw quite a few women walking alone. Since I like to talk and get to know people, I initiated a conversation with a middle aged woman. I found out that she works at 3M and just came back from her trip to Shanghai. We talked about the Shanghai Expo. We had a great time talking and walking together, for a very short time.
After she left and during my second round of walking, I initiated a conversation with another woman who was listening to her music. I found out that she works for the school district, so we talked about different schools in Woodbury. Obviously the woman enjoyed our talk as well, because she walked some extra distance than she planned. It was so much more interesting when you have someone to talk with while walking.
I could struck a conversation with people at the airport, in the airplane, in the checkout line, at parties. I am not shy in that aspect.
We live in a society that is dominated by shallow conversations. At least that’s how I feel.
We talk a lot, but mostly about not so important stuff, even among family members and good friends.
I grew up in a family where we didn’t talk a lot. My father is the best handyman I know. He can do and fix almost anything in the house. But he is not a man of word. Growing up, I was definitely an introvert.
I am still an introvert when it comes to talking about feelings and inner most thoughts. Writing comes so much easier for me. The hard part is not keeping such conversation going after someone takes the initial step, the hard part is for me to take the first step.
Asking for feedback requires some time and thinking on the other party. Nowadays everyone is so busy. It also requires courage and trust to say the truth. I feel hesitant to ask for such a favor tht’s not so easy to do.
But I believe this task of getting feedback is an important one. I will overcome any resistance and do it. Ideally, this should be something I do regularly as Celes does.
I so admire her wisdom and passion in becoming the best she can be.
I just sent out my request to a few people via email. Now it’s time (1 am 9/14/2010) for bed. I am already feeling better and energized for having overcome my initial resistence.