Saturday, May 15, 2010

The New Thing Part 2 is coming in 3 days

An essential part of the New Openness is letting people judge your work. I'm a little cautious about this, mostly because I'm acutely susceptible to negative feedback - it's not that I don't like it, it's that I've often found negative feedback demolishes my desire to create something.

There's been a recent bubble of articles about letting people judge your work, and asking who should judge your work. Seth Godin has been talking a lot about shipping (finishing a project and sending it out into the world); he says:
[S]ome people learn to ship, they learn to do work that matters and most of all, they learn to ignore the critics they can never possibly please. The ability to choose who judges your work--the people who will make it better, use it and reward you--is the key building block in becoming an artist in whatever you do.

Trent at the Simple Dollar also did a post of being careful about who judges you.

A lot of the people who judge you will never be pleased with you, no matter what you do. It will never, ever be enough. There will always be something with which they can bring you down and reassert their sense of superiority.
Guess what? Their opinions do not matter. Not one little bit. If you waste even one second of your life trying to please such people, that’s a second you’ll never get value from and never get back.


In the end, the only opinions that really matter are your own opinions and the opinions of a very small and select group of people who know the full situation and whose opinions you’ve actually decided to care about. Everyone else? Not so much
After thinking about this, I've decided to take a different approach with Part 2 of the New Thing. I'm going to be interested in everyone's opinions and ideas, but I'm going to reserve the right to not care about them. I have no idea how that balancing act will work in practice, but I'm fascinated to find out.
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