“Critical feedback is the breakfast of champions. Defensiveness is the dinner of losers.”
Why are people defensive? Is it because they don’t want to be wrong? Perhaps their own identity or self-worth is so wrapped up in something that anything that doesn’t align with their thinking is taken as a personal indictment? Regardless of why anyone might be defensive it is easy to see that there is very little positive that can come from a defensive mindset.
The best athletes are always looking for critical feedback in order to improve their game. They watch film, they solicit input from trusted coaches, they look for ways to remove flaws from their performance in order to get better. You can’t do that if you have a defensive mindset. You can’t be focused on growing and improving if you aren’t willing to see flaws as opportunities.
Some of the most impactful feedback I have ever received has come at times and places in life that it would have been easy for me to say “I don’t care what you say or think, this is who I am. I am right…” If I had taken that approach I would have missed the opportunity to learn, grow and improve. I wouldn’t have seen the “flaws in my game” and then found ways to address those flaws and hopefully improve my performance. Self-improvement is a continual and ongoing process and I know I have many more opportunities to get better by seeking out candid and critical feedback.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Make sure that you start with a good one by embracing any critical feedback offered.