I wish I just had a thicker skin.
That’s something I often hear.
And I totally get where that’s coming from.
It seems so much easier to have their comments + criticism bounce off of you.
Without sticking to you.
Without getting through the walls you’ve been putting up around yourself.
Yet, the truth is, you’ll miss out on a lot of interesting feedback, useful insights, energizing conversations and nurturing connections, when you close yourself off from what others are saying.
The trick is NOT to build walls around you.
So that nothing can come in and hurt you.
Because you’ll end up feeling lonely, trapped and stuck.
Only fed by your own input.
Not getting any fresh perspectives from the outside to help you grow, to discover new ways of doing things.
The trick is to be open to what they got to say.
And then NOT use their words to make YOU feel bad about YOUrself.
The trick is to hear their words and know that their words are simply their opinion.
A reflection of their views on things, their expertise, their experience.
Not a measure of your value as a person.
Not an objective statement of how fundamentally, irreparably stupid or inadequate you are – even whenyou just made a sloppy mistake.
The trick is to hold their words in the palm of your hands and realize that any hurtful feelings come from what YOU are making their words mean about you.
You get to decide how you feel about their words.
You get tot decide what you do with their words.
Don’t use them as a tool to beat yourself up.
Use them as another perspective on things – neutral.
Possibly thought provoking.
And then blow your own mind by learning and growing and feeling blissfully confident.
NOT because you’ve learned to shut their words out.
But because you’ve learned to separate out their words from your value as a person.
Because you’ve learned to listen with curiosity.
And without using their opinion as a measuring stick for how capable you are.