Contribution Not Criticism
You probably know someone (usually an E-type person) who tells you, “Yes…but…” and then goes on to tell you what is missing in your reasoning. They point to you (often aggressively) that the glass you have brought to the table has some water in it, but that it is not full.
They might even put you down for your failure to deliver what they expected.
What is going on?
This person is assuming that the glass you delivered should have been full and that you failed to fill it. They assume that there is an ideal leader, parent, thinker, or manager and you aren’t it because you did not deliver a perfect solution, (i.e., a full glass). Your glass is only partially full.
There is no perfect parent. There is no perfect spouse. No perfect child. No perfect flower.
In other words, no single person can deliver a glass that is full to the rim. It has to be filled by multiple people.
Your partner contributed as much to the discussion as he or she could. Good. Recognize it and acknowledge it. Maybe, if you are smart enough, even appreciate it. Do not say, “But…” Instead, say, “I would like to add to what you said”.
And add more water to the glass.
Do not criticize the person for not delivering a full glass. Help him or her fill it.
This is not constructive criticism. It is contribution without criticism, without space for criticism.
Criticism is often based on the assumption or belief that the other party should have delivered something and failed.
Change your assumptions.
Assume the other party did the best they could with what they know. Assume the other party is not perfect and can’t be perfect.
Now, add to what they said (if you have something to say). That is all.
Ichak Kalderon Adizes