A lot of us are passionate about our jobs. We put in a lot of work and do the best we can. So it’s hard when other people don’t appreciate that work. Whether it’s a spreadsheet, or a campaign, or a new invention, you’ve put your heart and soul into it. You’re presenting to the world what is essentially a piece of you. This is a piece of me, what do you think? I think it’s shit. Oh. Yeah. Shit. Okay. Show me another piece of you. Cause this one’s shit. Yeah. I got it. Shit. Thanks. Sh— Fuuuu—
Okay, everyone calm down. There are gonna be times when someone doesn’t love that piece of you as much as you do. Most of the times, in fact. And it’s okay to defend that piece of you and explain why it’s so good.
There’s a difference between defending the merits of a piece, vs. being personally hurt and lashing out because they don’t love that piece of you. If you’re feeling hurt, it’ll often cloud the debate with emotion and yelling and crying.
So try these simple steps next time you’re about to spit on the client.
1) Consider that you might be wrong.
I know, I know, unpossible. But once every million or so times, you might be, uh, a little teeny tiny bit not 100% right. Try to see their side of things. I’ve thought of award-winning ads (in my mind, they were) that would’ve probably hurt sales and the brand, but hot damn it was a funny idea. Yes, if the idea goes through, you’ll be showered by money while having sex with super hot celebrities, but it might not be what’s best for everyone. Or anyone else.
2) Consider that there is no wrong.
What? But you just said I might be wrong. I know what I said. And I was wrong. Creatively speaking, there really is no right or wrong. Just opinions. And we’ve all got them. And we all use them. And that’s great. Can you imagine if we all thought the same way? What a boring utopian world that would be. As hard as it is to accept, there will be times where people just don’t like your ideas. For what reason? Dunno. Just don’t like it. Accept it.
3) It might have nothing to do with you.
Much like you, other humans also think about themselves all the time. It’s possible they don’t like your idea because they’re in a bad mood, or their kid screamed a similar idea into their ear, or the photo you used in the presentation reminds them of a school bully. I was told not to use a certain name in my scripts because that was the boss’s ex-wife’s name. Had I not been warned, or if we hadn’t known that info, the boss would’ve killed the idea and maybe he wouldn’t even have known why. Subconsciously he’d just hate it for some reason.
4) Remember there are more ideas out there.
In fact, there are infinite ideas out there. Yes, I know this was The One. The one where you got the money and the celeb sex and the twitter followers, but believe it or not, there’ll be other ideas. There always are. Writer’s block isn’t a permanent thing. It comes from worrying and stressing that another idea may never come. But they do. They always do.
This is a piece of me, what do you think? I think it’s shit. While I may not agree, I accept your opinion. And I’ve come back with this other piece of me. Hmmm. Less shit.
Yay! You show em, kiddo.