Life is a long learning journey.
It was one of those days when I felt downcasted over nitty gritty at work. Like a dwarf leaping endlessly to score a voice in a sulky boardroom filled with ‘me-first‘ audiences. Frustrated and infuriated for lack of support from peers, my mind was filled with a million questions revolving around:
“Have I explained enough in putting my points forward?”
That day, I was defeated. Does it matter if it’s a victory?
I’ve got grilled over at work, many times. It’s not always easy to accept criticisms, especially those that make us look weak and clueless in the eyes of others. Yup, it’s the ego that plays the devil card.
It will take multiple encounters to finally get used to criticisms:
Confront, Digest, Reset.
After all, it’s just work. Easier to say than done.
Until on my way home after a long day yesterday, I came across a special podcast episode with John Demsey published by Business of Fashion.
Inspired by the interview with John Dempsey, the Group President of Estée Lauder who started his career from humble beginnings. 5 jobs in 10 years after graduation doing all the groundwork that led him into prestige beauty, becoming who he is today.
“Every job I ever had gave me a front-row seat to really understanding how things were built and where the action was.” – John Demsey
I can’t help but reflecting every word. I can only imagine the hardship he’s been through, both thick and thin just from his words. It’s true that learning from every challenging encounter makes us stronger. Keeping our vision in mind and persistently do our very best in achieving it. With that, every defeat and every pain are just specks in the air. What matters is the collective essences we could squeeze out of those specks, cumulative learnings that are capable of improving our sense of maturity. Again, easier to say than done.
A reflection I’ve made out of my learning journey, here are what I find interesting to share.
Getting rid of negative thoughts is the crucial first step. It involves putting our ego behind and embracing criticisms. How? We confront them.
Homework must be done. We can start by making an effort in researching and analysing what went wrong and how to make them right. Hard work is part of the equation. Sometimes, we might find ways to further strengthen our points or even discover fine-tuning opportunities. There is no other way to confront criticisms without being the expert to our own problem.
There is a famous saying ‘a problem stated is half solved.’ We are our own motivator. By self-acknowledging a problem means we are ready to put our ego behind in confronting criticisms.
Letting go is the beginning of a positive mindset. It activates learning absorption capability. As we share our improvised humble stand with others, we are more than willing to learn from others simultaneously.
“Sometimes that something which we fear, strengthens our spirit and gives us a splash of hope.” – Harley King
Learning is a journey. The more we Confront, Digest, and Reset, the better we learn.
I’ve practised, learned without realising, and still do. Instead of piling negative thoughts, I felt good each time when I was able to rationalise my thoughts and emotions. Somehow, it gradually helped me in lifting up barriers, putting me a step closer to succeed.
Photo by @framesoflifeblog