Processing Feedback

Feedback has always been a very interesting thing. Sometimes it gives you bad feelings because one and other things, but oftentimes you receive an actionable item that propels you to the next level.

In the past, It’s not rare that I feel sad and depressed when receiving feedback. Most of the time this happens because I can’t proses the feedback well. Either because it is bad feedback, or because I’m just stuck in analysis paralysis because of the inexperience.

Bad Feedback

What do I mean by bad feedback? It is the feedback that doesn’t have a concrete example, is not specific, and is not relevant.

If the feedback receiver is a software engineer, the following feedbacks are feedback that can be improved:

  • “Your code is not following the standard” is the feedback that doesn’t have a concrete example.
  • “I don’t like your attitude” is a feedback that is not specific,
  • “You are beautiful”, is a feedback that is not relevant.

The feedbacks can be improved like the following:

  • “On yesterday’s pull request, you aren’t running linter before merging to master and it has unsorted import order. It’s not up to our company’s standard style”
  • “When you are talking to me, I feel attacked because you sound condescending”.

And please, don’t do this:

You can try to improve the feedback that you received by letting the other person know that you need more information on what his feedback is about.

Analysis Paralysis

Analysis paralysis come from internal, rather than an external factor. You received decent feedback and causes a lot of things to come into your mind. “Do I always sounds condescending?”, “Did I break something?”, “Is my mistake will smudge my performance?”, “What I can do to fix this?”, “I’m so stupid I don’t realize this!”, and many other thoughts.

In the past, I’ve been very pessimist that it affects my mental health and me being suicidal. I always see the bad possibility that can happen. Add that with the analysis paralysis. When that happens, I closed my thought, and at worst, I become depressed.

I’ve been able to handle that process much better. I know what to analyze, how to take the next action, and how to ensure things don’t derail. Read 3 things that changed my life.

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