Feedback is a strange thing and you have hit on two key aspects that are missed time and again and even when we learn, as you have described so well, the hard way, we seem to forget and dive into the same shallow pond again.

I have stopped asking for writing feedback. I listen to reactions like a naturalist trying to make sense of a new environment. At work people ask for constructive feedback meaning they want me to tell them what they are doing wrong so they can “fix” it. They are often frustrated when I try and just report back what I see them doing, if the reflection resonates (as you put it so well) then they have the opportunity and the responsibility to follow up on it. In teaching as in writing, the art is following your intent.

There is a lot of noise out there and it is easy for any of us to lose our bearing and even forget where we were trying to get to if we start following the clamor.

Writer, walker, poet, educator. Commercial fisherman, builder, donut maker, organic grower. Boston, U. City, Maine, South Africa, Madrid.

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