Saturday, July 21, 2012

Criticism Redux

If you read back over my blog you'll find that handling criticism has always been a major theme of my work.

And this is something that extends into both my Programming and my Writing.  I've previously found handling feedback to be one of the more challenging aspects of my day to day efforts, I've seen that in simple code reviews and in writing workshops.  I approached them with apprehension and often would do my best to avoid them.

It's not only been a major aspect of my work though, it's also been one of the biggest areas of change over time.  An individuation has occurred, before I was my work.  If you knocked my code you were knocking me, if you called out a spelling mistake you were calling me a bad speller.  Now, it's different.

In my previous job I was in a position where I could literally do anything, there was no process to review what I did and beyond anything that literally brought down the house I had free reign to approach problems however I liked.  At first that was what I thought I had always wanted, in the same way as it's nice to be in a corner writing something that will never see the light of day.  It can be fun but a lot of things are, for a little while at least.

The issue is stagnation.  I will never improve without feedback, what's more it begins to feel directionless when I aim for an audience of one.  It's nice to have somebody go through your code, if they can improve something, good.  I am not my work, it is a product of my ability.  Teach me how I could have enhanced my product and my abilities' value increases.

It's a confidence thing, it's a perspective thing but it's something that has certainly changed drastically over that last few years and now I find myself actively wanting it.

As long as it's constructive of course!

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