…THEY NEVER MEAN IT!
How many friends do you know who said, “Let’s make a promise: If either of us gets in a bad relationship, we’ll tell the other person we don’t like their boyfriend/girlfriend.”
You both agree, smiling, happy you can be so open with your friend. (It’s like two 4-year-old boys solemnly pledging that they’re never going to like girls because they’re “gross.” Yeah dude. Sure.)
THEN YOUR FRIEND GETS IN A HORRIBLE RELATIONSHIP…AND YOU CAN’T SAY ANYTHING!! I’ve seen it myself — you try to subtly bring something up (“Hey man, do you think it’s weird that she doesn’t let you order steak?”) and he instantly becomes defensive. Sigh.
- People do not want honest feedback about their relationship because their intimate partner becomes more important than their friends. As the old rule goes, if you don’t like the relationship, you bring it up once and never again. If you want to stay friends after that, you support their relationship, however much you don’t agree with it.
- Usually, these disastrous relationships end (or worse, they get married…that is a long, long life). And it all could have been fixed with some honest feedback if they were ready to hear it.
- The way you GIVE feedback is as important as the feedback itself.
Example: This is a good way to give feedback
Example: This person gives feedback horribly and he will die alone
In this post, I’m giving you a word-for-word script you can use to get honest feedback from your friends and family — feedback that will let you in on the conversation they’re already having about you, sometimes involving them rolling their eyes when you go to the bathroom.
You want to know how to improve yourself? You have to ask.
What would happen if you sent this to 3 people today?
I’m trying to come up with a really good New Year’s resolution for 2015 and I want your help. I know this might sound weird, but I would love your feedback on (1) one thing you think I do really well, and (2) one thing I could improve about _____.
(Note: ____ could be words like “social skills,” “the way I dress,” “how to be more thoughtful,” etc — whatever you want to improve.)
This email is the kind of thing NOBODY else does. And it can pay off in massive rewards. What if you found out that you tend to ramble on and on, and everybody hates it? You would never know unless you asked — and now you can fix it and move on. You’ll also get to find out what people LOVE about you, which is something we don’t get to hear enough.
This email works because you’re transparently telling people what you’re looking for, acknowledging it’s a little weird, AND asking for one positive and one constructive piece of feedback (can anyone spot why I chose that?).
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