How does one improve, how does one give feedback, should you give feedback or should you stay quiet and ignore?
Personally I’m a very easy going guy, if someone comes up to me and provides help, I open up, accept and process. Admittedly, my initial inner dialogue can sometimes be that of “who do you think you are, I know what I’m doing!”, but I’ll quickly slap myself in the face and step in the shoes of the person.
My general attitude in life is that there is always something to learn from anyone, whether they provide good or bad feedback. To improve and learn in life one needs to be open, one needs to continuously learn and seek education. The moment you stop and think you know it all, is the moment that you fail to be the best you can be.
What to do when you think you see something that can be improved with your help? There is so much you need to consider like do I truly have a better way to offer? am I confident that I know what I’m talking about? will I come across as wanting to toot my own horn? how to present the solution? will they appreciate help? I’m not getting paid nor asked, should I bother? and so on.
I see myself helping others also as a way of learning. While helping others I too learn, whether it’s learning how to improve communication, delivery of the message, attitude, listening, debate or through additional research required, there is always something to learn.
Personally I like to receive feedback as much as possible, I invite people for feedback, I want people to point out the things I do wrong, my grammar, my teaching and so on. But it has to come with a solution and be provided in a positive manner, pointing out a mistake with no solution is like standing in-front of someone hanging on for dear life, not lending a hand and calling 911 with a smirk on your face. It’s like calling your class-mate fat without providing details on how to lose it.
Did you know that the majority of time it’s harder to speak up than to stay quiet? Ignorance is easy, ignorance is laziness, it’s choosing the easy way without confrontation. When you speak up and bring something to light, there are always some who will jump on you and have their opinion, which they’re entitled to, but some will chose to put you do down “you don’t have an exercise science degree”, “your profile photo is overexposed”, “your past tense is incorrect” and whatever else they ‘think’ will demoralise you. Some will act like you’re attacking their perfect baby, they’ll be jumping on you like a mad dog whether you’re right or wrong, no matter how you approach it, it will be wrong, don’t touch the baby! My point is, speaking up is harder than staying quiet, sometimes try and understand why someone would chose the hard way, ask yourself: could it be because they care about you or the subject at hand?
You have to face the fact that if you speak up, you will always make enemies, there will always be those who simply can’t see how you really meant it, especially on the Internet, people don’t know you, they don’t know your personality, whether you’re down to earth or full of yourself, whether you’re seeking to help or seeking recognition. And I understand that, in such cases I’ll do my best to provide additional information, but there is only so much one can do, sometimes they’re in such a closed minded space that they won’t even read what’s right in-front of them.
I’m not perfect, I also seek recognition sometimes, I like a pat on the shoulder too, it’s only human, but I can honestly say that in general that is not my intention, neither with my Facebook posts nor articles, I past that stage in life the moment I decided to shave my head and care more about how I feel, rather than what others think.
Of course you can’t go providing feedback all the time, trying to help and correct left right and centre, becoming the annoying door-knocking Jehovah witness! There has to be a limit, that limit should at least be at: if it has serious ramifications on a large scale, bash that door down no matter what!
I’ve tried many strategies over time, but I’m going to try a new one —which I know is going to be hard— that is to ignore those who attack, add no value, don’t understand or disagree. Of course those that disagree are the ones that can provide education, so I should elaborate. I will ignore those that disagree in such a way it seems they’re unwilling to provide value and simply talk down.
Facebook groups are a breeding ground for trolls, mis-communication, attacks and judgemental behaviour. Some of the actions that I frequently see turning into back and forth useless communication, but not limited to: calling names, using foul language, personal attacks, not properly reading the post, not understanding the post and jealousy. If I see someones first reply to a post containing any of these, I will try to ignore these people, as nothing further meaningful or value added can be expected, no matter what is said, they’ve got their mind made up. So why even go there and waste your valuable time on them?
What are some of your strategies for learning and teaching, or Facebook communication? Yours below or on this Facebook post.