Feeling the love

A friend wrote to me recently, and talked about the notion of being like a politician, or a sycophant and only wanting comments about my writing from those who agreed with my opinion, or showed their approval for me. Whilst it took me some time to even understand what she meant, this comment nailed it, “That is what I mean about being surrounded by sycophants – I do not want only to be told “Oh I love your work” so that I feel good! If someone likes it – great, but why? And if they don’t – fair enough, but why?” Like this friend, who is an artist, I don’t only want to be surrounded by people who say they love my writing or ideas, as I also revel in hearing from those who seek to make me think about things in new ways, or who completely disagree with a point of view I have expressed.  But I guess the thing I’ve been thinking about in the last couple of weeks since my father in law has died, is that we become friends with like-minded people, people whose company we enjoy, and who don’t necessarily agree with us all the time, nor we with them, but people with whom we love and respect and who can agree to disagree without it destroying the friendship. We hang out with people we like and love, and who like or love us. People hang out in clubs, with people who may be very different, but who have at least one similar interest. That is normal. Of course I love the praise I receive on my blog,  and this last couple of weeks it has really helped me ‘feel the love’ I have really needed as a human being during this time of loss and grief and I thank you for it.

Ps. Here is a link to a wonderful story of love written by someone caring for their father with dementia. http://www.bodyandsoul.com.au/health+healing/news+features/my+dads+dementia+changed+my+life,18069

Pss. I should have made it clear my friend was not being mean in our ‘conversations’ about sycophants, just wanting me to think about things, and I love her comments, the devils advocates one, the loving ones, and all the others. xo

5 thoughts on “Feeling the love

  1. I find that I am most able to hear/accept the ‘hard/tough/real’ comments from those whom I respect and also those who allow me to speak frankly with them in return. I struggled a lot with constructive criticism, it wasn’t ’til I was studying creative writing at Uni that I learnt to GIVE it, and thus to receive it.

    • So true Esther, and I too learnt ot give and receive constuctive criticism more easily when studying creative writing at uni! My blog is a journal of my thoughts and life rather than ‘creative writing’ perse, and so sometimes the criticism can seem a little harsh, but I decided way back we are all entitled to our opinion, and if anyone was/is bullying or abusive in their response, then I just send delete those comments.

  2. My Mother (deceased) loved me very much, but I stopped talking to her about my work while at Art College. Everything I did was great, unfortunately I didn’t need to hear that my ordinary efforts were outstanding. I wanted contructive criticism so I could improve. At the time I didn’t realise that Mum knew she didn’t have the expertise to evaluate my work so she was just feeding my boundless enthusism and ego. But Mum told me a great lesson in life – it’s easy to find people with an opinion about you and what you are doing, however it is far harder to find people who have expertise and an opinion. These people will help you, not crush you, they can guide, enthuse and nourish. Unfortunately it is not hard to find the other type of people who only criticise, often they only have an opinion which can make them only opinionated, jealous and hurtful. I think you should try to hear everyone but only listen to a few…

  3. good blog, I still haven’t ventured back into blogging full time as I do not wish to bring negativity in my life at the moment. As I sit and respond, Pete the dog has walked up to my plate of grapes, stuck out his tongue and gab a couple then proceeded to eat them. Odd dog really but made me laugh.

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