What I wanted to name this post was, “Why constructive criticism is important and why we should learn to take it well.” Since I’ve always been someone that is open to learning from where others think that I can improve, but only when it comes from a genuine place and it is constructive, and not just unwarranted criticism for the sake of it.
To me, constructive criticism is a necessity when you run a blog or any type of creative outlet. You can only improve from your mistakes and you can only get better if you’re open to improvement and open to hearing what others say, I love constructive criticism and it’s something I often ask for, especially from my friends.
Before a blog post gets published, it gets sent to a friend to read, or I’ll ask Pedro if he’ll be so kind as to proof read a post and to point out the errors that I cannot see, usually off Skype though since it’s just utterly cringe watching someone read your work, but there have been times where I’ve had grammatical errors pointed out to me that I was oblivious to, there’s been times where I’ve had a friend tell me that the post itself got lost and my point never made, thus resulting in me completely rewriting, and there’s even times when I’ve been told an idea has fallen flat, and the reasons why and how I can make it work or an alternative take on it from another point of view has been handed to me, thanks to asking for and accepting constructive criticism.
But this is the thing: I see it a lot, people mistaking constructive criticism for hate, or giving out to somebody who has commented on their article or video with another view and it’s been taken completely the wrong way. As I said earlier, unwarranted criticism that hasn’t come from a genuine place and was given to you with the intention of upsetting you, is not nice, and I can condone to and appreciate people giving out and sticking up for themselves.
I think I’m a pretty crappy blogger when it comes to engaging with the community though, I don’t tend to comment on blog posts because I worry a little bit about how I’m coming across, but if a blogger asked for my opinion on a post, asked for tips on how to improve, or even just asked for my opposite opinion, I’m happy to give it to them, I’m happy to help others grow just as they can help me grow.
Learning to take it well can increase the quality of your work
If I got upset every time I was told something that someone didn’t like about one of my posts or pointed out a picture that looked a little odd and out of place compared to the rest, I wouldn’t be blogging anymore. I do feel like ever since I had people proof reading for me and making suggestions, I’ve improved the quality of my work a lot.
I’ve been learning to write more and to stick to a point, and I’ve been learning to incorporate images that I use in my posts in an interesting way, so that instead of just being stuck in the post because it needs a photo, they become part of the post, and part of the reason you’re reading. I’ve also been trying to include more links to products and whatnot in my posts, sometimes I get asked, “Where did you get that x from?” and I feel like it might be a little more convenient for the reader to just have access to going right to the webpage instead of waiting for my response.
I want my work to sit together nicely, instead of clash and look a little bit odd against each other, and this is something I’ve picked up on thanks to reading other bloggers, thanks to accepting constructive criticism and thanks to being willing to improve. I don’t have the best blog on the internet, but I certainly work hard at what I’ve got.
Of course, I’m only human and I take it harshly sometimes too
I do think that we’re a little bit sensitive, sometimes overly sensitive, when it comes to our work. If someone randomly pointed something wrong out with my work, would my mind automatically go into defence mode before evaluating their point? Probably.
I’m not perfect, and I’m not saying that I never get offended or think, “Oh shush you,” when someone does point something wrong out, hey, I’m only human and even though I love constructive criticism and take it seriously, I have my moments too.
There’s been times where I’ve also been in a ~sensitive~ mood and I’ve written a piece I’ve been really proud of, literally asked for proof reading and then gotten a bit sour when something was pointed out.
I do think that as a blogging community we should accept the fact that people aren’t going to like everything we do, people are going to notice typos or spelling errors and feel compelled to be pointing them out, instead of a passive aggressive response, like I see a lot these days with the rise of “roasting” and being a “savage” being a cool new trend, it’s not really necessary and for a bunch of people who are constantly trying to enforce positivity, to be writing back snappy comments to someone who probably had their best intentions laid out for you.
All I’m saying is, I welcome constructive criticism and I think we all should. I’m getting over this whole call-out culture, especially on Twitter, with bloggers and YouTubers.