Feedback

No, not the kind that makes everybody in the room cover their ears…

I’ve been thinking a lot about feedback; about accountability. I’ve been considering this question:

Who has permission to speak into my life (or your life)?

Over the years, I’ve watched leaders, pastors, business owners, husbands, wives, etc. as their lives have crumbled in front of them, for various reasons. But the one thing that has been consistent in the lives of those I knew, was that (from where I could see) there was no one who had permission to speak into their lives – which left them isolated, untouchable, and inevitably un-teachable.

I was reminded of this in real-time last week when I asked someone who knows they have permission to speak into my life a question. The question was:

If there was one area in my life, one thing that you know I need to work on – what would it be?

Before the words even left my mouth, this person delivered the answer. Short, un-cut, and so uncomfortably true. But I’m so thankful for this relationship and for the honest, loving feedback. Some things in our lives that we’ve become blind to can be painfully visible to those around us.

Getting feedback isn’t easy:

  • Some people would rather gossip than give feedback
  • Some people give bad feedback
  • Some people have lost the right to give you feedback
  • Sometimes you just plain don’t want to hear feedback (here’s a heart check)
  • Maybe you haven’t invested in building the right relationships for feedback
  • Maybe you’re scared of what you’ll hear or learn

So, this is just my story to maybe inspire others to 1) ask for feedback 2) give someone permission to speak into your life and 3) stay teachable. In my opinion, this is the recipe for a long and successful career, ministry, marriage, relationship.

If you listen to constructive criticism,
you will be at home among the wise.

Proverbs 15:31

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