Uncharacteristically short for me today. Just some brilliant advice I learned today in Tara Mohr’s Playing Big program (aff).
The theme in Playing Big for the next two weeks is unhooking from criticism. Kinda (ahem) critical if you want to play big, because the bigger you play, the more you stand out, and the more criticism you’re going to get.
It just comes with the territory.
Criticism is a sign that you’re doing important work.
And as Tara pointed out, criticism tells you a lot more about the critic than it does about YOU.
Someone doesn’t like your writing?
That doesn’t mean your writing sucks, just that it’s not the writing for them.
Your painting didn’t sell?
That doesn’t mean your painting sucks, just that it’s not the right painting for this particular audience.
Plus you know you can’t please everyone, right? The truth is, if you’re getting criticism, it probably means you’re onto something. Think of the heroes in your life. I’ll bet at least some of them have been targets of a lot of criticism. Did they let it stop them?
If they’re one of your heroes, I suspect not.
On our call today, Tara gave us a bit of homework that I thought was absolutely brilliant, and which I’m now going to pass on to you:
Head over to Amazon.com, and look up your favorite books by your favorite authors. The books you absolutely LOVE. Scroll down to the reviews and read some of the five-star reviews.
Then (and this is the brilliant part), read some of the really bad reviews. The one- and two-star reviews.
Then ask yourself, do those lousy reviews mean that the book that you loved actually sucks? Ask yourself, do those reviews tell you about the book author, or about the person writing the review?
I spent maybe ten minutes over on Amazon earlier today, checking out bad reviews of books I loved. Wow.
I may just have to add this to my weekly routine, along with reading through the emails I’ve saved from people who have been touched by something I’ve written or created. (Though I also need to learn to unhook from praise, which is the theme for the next Playing Big call.)
Try it, and let me know your reactions.
PS — Pssst! Know someone who might benefit from seeing this today? Pass it on!