My wife is my foremost critic when it comes to my writing and I am aware of a little dance I play with this. If I don’t want to have her look over something I’ve written it usually an indication it isn’t very good. Subconsciously I know that if I share it with her, she will confirm to me what I fear – that it isn’t very good – and I will have to do it over. On the other hand, when I want to share something with her, it usually means I don’t need to because I know it’s good.
Which leads me to one of the biggest mistakes of my life: Thinking that I am smarter than my wife.
Here’s why this is no good:
1) It’s not true. I’m not smarter than my wife; I merely think I am.
2) It wastes time. Think of all the times I’ve had to do something over because I didn’t listen to my wife in the first place. (Of course I knew better.)
3) It discounts another person – in this case it happens to be my wife – the last person I would want to discount. To devalue someone’s opinion is to devalue them.
4) I lose her valuable input. This is probably the most costly. Going it alone does just that.
Actually, it’s probably a good idea to not think of yourself as smarter than anyone. Then you can learn from everybody. Isn’t that a better way?