Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Are You a Critic or a Cynic

In my path to becoming a professional I've valued the constructive criticism of others. At times I've found it's difficult to get that feedback because people are afraid of hurting my feelings but it's essential so that I can continue to improve. I've realized that there is a big difference between being critical and cynical. Sometimes that has explained why my response has been different based on the source from which it came. One tech editor who helped me to make many improvements to my patterns commented on how well I accepted the information and that she had been worried about sharing her point of view.

"Criticism is doubt informed by curiosity and a deep knowledge of a discipline related to your work. By contrast, cynicism is a form of doubt resulting from ignorance and antiquated ways."
Scott Belsky

His quote comes from a great article here on who we should listen to when we hear criticism.

Dictionary definitions say that "a cynic is a person who believes that only selfishness motivates human actions and who disbelieves in or minimizes selfless acts or disinterested points of view." and a critic "is a person who judges, evaluates, or analyzes literary or artistic works, dramatic or musical performances, or the like,especially for a newspaper or magazine."

What do you think, have you been aware of the difference or have you responded the same way to all negative comments? 

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