Your Safe Way to Receive Feedback

emotions feedback inner critic podcast simple tools Mar 09, 2022

Your Safe Way to Receive Feedback

 

One of the ways that you can tell if you’re an Enneagram type One is by looking at what bubbles up inside of you when you receive feedback. 

 

We Ones basically have a feedback loop running in the background at all times. I have called it the inner critic. 

 

Most people have an inner critic or judge, what sets ours apart is that it is relentless. 

 

So when someone else offers you feedback, even in the most loving way, it can feel like an attack on the very essence of your being.

 

Our inability to receive feedback because of the compounded painful internal sensations keeps us stuck.

 

We keep ourselves safe at a terrible cost to our dreams.

 

It keeps you from doing the little things in life and has you not taking a yoga class because you fear being called out in class as an example of what not to do even though you know it would increase your strength and help you connect with your body which you really want for yourself. 

 

It keeps you from doing the bigger things in life and has you not go after an advanced training in your field because you fear receiving feedback even though really that’s what you’d be there for.

 

What if you could optimize the process you’re in and get better results faster? That’s what’s available for you on the other side of feedback. Even as an Enneagram type 1, there’s still a safe to fo this, YOUR safe way to receive feedback is in this episode.

 

I’ve been on the receiving end of feedback more and more lately so I decided to pause and explore what I could learn and bring to you all today. Here’s what I noticed. 

 

For one, it’s not true that as a 1, I will always be affected by the feedback in the same way even with a relentless inner critic. 

 

And second, the way the feedback is offered has nothing to do with how I respond to it. 

 

I can stop asking everyone around me to be different - what a relief because that never works.

 

Enter YOUR safe way to receive feedback as a perfectionist.

 

It’s a 2-prong approach that you can do simultaneously to help you in situations where you don’t know the feedback is coming and when you do.

 

You’ll want to listen to the full episode HERE for full details.

 

Be proactive with your approach to feedback by deciding what you will make it mean ahead of time.

 

Here are my tried and tested reminders for when I put myself in the position of receiving feedback:

 

  • The feedback will help me to get closer to my goal, I may not know how yet, but it will. 
  • There’s room for growth in that area and that’s exactly what I’m all in for.
  • I decide if I want to implement the feedback.

 

A few questions I asked myself that have solidified my approach to feedback are:

 

  •  What do you want feedback for?
  •  What are the lessons you want from the feedback?
  •  If you could decide what to do with any of the feedback (and you can) what would you decide to do with this feedback?

 

Develop your emotional mastery so you can be in any situation and not feel out of control.

 

The reason we fear these moments when someone gives us feedback is because of how we feel when that happens. 

 

Think about it, how do you feel when someone is giving you feedback? I have felt, small, incapable, inexperienced, flawed, dismissed, bad. 

 

Once those emotions kick in, it’s so easy to get into a spin out and then each emotion fuels each other and it’s a terrible mess inside.

 

Practicing these emotions, bits at a time builds your confidence that you can handle any emotion, including small, incapable, inexperienced, flawed, dismissed or bad.

 

There are ways to do this safely and at your own pace. You can view my mini trainings in our Facebook group, join now by clicking HERE

 

Resources:

 

Work with me: HERE

 

The Enneagram One Project Facebook Group: HERE

 


 

Transcript:

 

Welcome every One, you are listening to The Enneagram One Project Podcast, Ep 10 - Your Safe Way to Receive Feedback

 

One of the ways that you can tell if you’re an Enneagram type One is by looking at what bubbles up inside of you when you receive feedback. We Ones basically have a feedback loop running in the background at all times. I have called it the inner critic. Most people have an inner critic or judge, what sets ours apart is that it is relentless. So when someone else offers you feedback, even in the most loving way, it can feel like an attack on the very essence of your being.

 

I was on a panel of type Ones and another attendee described it so very well. I didn’t catch who this person heard the analogy from so if it’s you or you know who did, please let me know, reach out to me over on instagram @dominiquevandal.

 

The participant said this: receiving feedback for Ones is like you are wearing a vest that is already poking at you in some way. So can you picture that? You’re already sensitive and raw where that vest is. Then someone says something, gives you feedback, and now it’s as if they’ve pressed even harder on this one area on the vest and it digs and remember, you’re already sensitive there because the vest has already been digging at you. 

 

The vest in this example, is the relentless inner critic that is ever present in the perfectionist brain that thinks it’s doing us a great service by helping us improve. The inner critic is already very painful so when others give us feedback it 10 times that pain. It can feel excruciating to be on the receiving end of feedback.

 

The cost to our dreams

 

Our inability to receive feedback because of the compounded painful internal sensations keeps us stuck. We don’t step into the spaces we can make a difference in and change the world, we hold ourselves back from growth opportunities that would change our lives. 

 

This can be for the little things in our lives such as not taking a yoga class because you fear being called out in class as an example of what not to do even though you know it would increase your strength and help you connect with your body which you really want for yourself. Or something a little bigger, maybe you don’t go after an advanced training in your field because you fear receiving feedback even though really that’s what you’d be there for.

 

We keep ourselves protected from that pain when we avoid feedback, yes, but we then keep ourselves small. It is done at a terrible cost to our dreams. The little ones like yoga and the bigger ones like advanced trainings. How often have you thought, I want to be in that room but I’ll have to receive feedback?

 

If you are in the room, the space of your growth, because you’ve convinced yourself to do as much. But then, you’re in the room and you don’t raise your hand, you don’t participate unless you know you will come off as knowing what you’re doing. You make sure you never give anyone a reason to give you feedback that could hurt. The truth is that after you do step up, your inner critic will have tons of ways you could improve even if everyone else thinks you’ve done it perfectly.

 

You stop your growth every time you do this. You are creating an obstacle in reaching your goal that is self imposed. Will you get that certificate, that mention, that next level. I mean probably, you’re a perfectionist, there’s no way you don’t but you’ll have slowed and hindered your progress the entire way. 

 

What if you could optimize the process and get better results faster? That’s what’s available for you on the other side of feedback.

 

It’s not the feedback or how it’s given, it’s what you make it mean

 

I’ve been on the receiving end of feedback more and more lately so I decided to pause and explore what I could learn and bring to you all today. Here’s what I noticed. For one, it’s not true that as a 1, I will always be affected by the feedback in the same way even with a relentless inner critic. And second, the way the feedback is offered has nothing to do with how I respond to it. I can stop asking everyone around me to be different - what a relief because that never works.

 

I’ve had 2 people recently say something like “let’s clean this up first” referring to some work I had handed in before answering questions I had. In one instance, I became defensive because I made the comment mean this person thinks I need hand holding and in the other case, I became open because I made the same comment mean maybe there’s something I can learn here. Same words, same way of providing feedback, totally different reaction on my part. That’s because what I make it mean is what creates my lived experience of the situation not what is said.

 

I’ve also received feedback from this other person in particular over a long apprenticeship and I reacted very differently to much of the feedback based on what I would make it mean. This person would always point out ways in which I was showing promise followed by how I could improve, how they might assist me and end with a note on how much I had grown in skill since the beginning and how great that was. 

 

Sometimes, I would clam up and protect myself fiercely because I legit thought I was unable to self correct, as though that’s what I was supposed to do, and it wasn’t but I made that mean terrible things about myself making me unable to receive the gift of that feedback. 

 

Sometimes, I would open up to everything that was in that feedback, absorbing it, making the most of it because I made it mean it was a gift to help me grow into this new role. The manner in which the person delivered the feedback did not change, I took it differently based on MY mindset. Again, what I make it mean is how I experience it.

 

That to me is great news because the problem with asking others to be mindful of how our brain works is that it puts the onus on them to behave differently. We have no control over that, ever. It’s basically crossing your fingers hoping the other person has the empathy, compassion and emotional mastery to act in a way that is kind to your brain. Some people will be able to do that but many won’t and it puts you in a disempowered position. You are handing over your emotional state, your lived experience to another. Realizing that my reaction is not an automatic and that it doesn’t have to do with others in any way is empowering.

 

Yes, you can tell or ask others to be mindful, but it really does start with you. That means it’s up to you. You are the one that has to show empathy, compassion and self mastery towards yourself to then navigate feedback in a way that is supporting the outcomes you want for yourself and your desired lived experience.

 

YOUR safe way to receive feedback

 

When you know the feedback is coming you can practice intentional thoughts and beliefs. For instance, I have been putting myself in situations over the last 2 years where I am seeking exponential growth within the container of different programs. I show up, I do my thing AND I not only evaluate myself but I seek the feedback from the authority in that space. Sometimes I know when the feedback is going to happen and sometimes I don’t. In the end, I know I want the feedback and the biggest gift I’ve given myself over these last 2 years has been to become more and more intentional in how I approach the feedback. I have come up with a few questions that I ask myself before reading the feedback as well as intentional thoughts to support my approach.

 

I go into feedback reminding myself that the feedback will help me to get closer to my goal, I may not know how yet, but it will. I remind myself that I decide what the feedback means to me, no one else. I make it mean that there’s room for growth in that area and that’s exactly what I’m all in for. Then I look for the truth in the feedback itself. If I’m honest, I can see how the person could come to this conclusion and then I decide if I want to implement the feedback, basically what do I want to do with it. Even if it’s a supervisor, a love one, whomever, I still have the right to choose how I work with the feedback.

 

I invite you to take some time now by pausing this or set aside some time to consider how you can make feedback a growth opportunity, something you can open up to instead of giving it the power to be hurtful and fuel your own inner critic.

 

So be intentional with how you approach feedback, especially when you know it’s coming, or you’ve chosen to receive it.

 

What about when it’s in everyday moments where you had no idea this would be happening. You can prepare yourself for these experiences as well by developing emotional mastery. The reason we fear these moments when someone gives us feedback is because of how we feel when that happens. Think about it, how do you feel when someone is giving you feedback? I have felt, small, incapable, inexperienced, flawed, dismissed, bad. Once those emotions kick in, it’s so easy to get into a spin out and then each emotion fuels each other and it’s a terrible mess inside.

 

The reason these cycles take hold is because when the internal felt sense of say “flawed” takes hold, feels so powerful, so awful and there’s this sense that you’ll never make it to the other side of it. Practicing these emotions, bits at a time, without indulging in them, that means letting it take over, builds your confidence that you can handle any emotion, including small, incapable, inexperienced, flawed, dismissed or bad. You are not small, flawed or bad, you are experiencing the internal felt sense for that moment, it is not your identity.

 

I’ll remind you, it’s not the event itself that makes you feel small, it’s what you make that event mean in your mind. You could absolutely decide ahead of time what you intend to make it mean when such a situation takes place but in my experience, when I’m in the moment, it’s my default thinking that takes over and it does so because there’s a primal part of me that interprets the situation as a threat. That’s why emotional mastery is so important. If you can be with any emotion, you can be in any situation, including receiving feedback. That is why emotional mastery is the backbone of my coaching program.

 

In the case of receiving feedback, I would start with identifying the emotion that I often feel when I receive feedback. For me, that might be flawed. Then I would witness where I feel the internal sensations that I name as flawed. Maybe it’s a drop of my shoulders, a closing in on myself, a pit in my gut, an agitation just above that. This is called naming and witnessing the emotion.

 

I find it wonderful that I don’t have to involve anyone else in the process of becoming better able to receive feedback. Others get to be who they are. I don’t have to micro manage them so I can feel better and I don’t have to micro manage myself either.

 

This is YOUR safe way to receive feedback, you totally can become skilled at receiving feedback. Decide ahead of time what you will make it mean when you already know feedback is coming while developing emotional mastery to support yourself in any situation.

 

You’ve waited long enough to make your dreams come true. The sooner you implement YOUR safe way to receive feedback, the sooner you step into what you know is meant for you. I’d love to support you so get in touch, let’s work together, all the info you need is over at dominiquevandal.com 

 

Until next time, love to each and every One!

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