Editors : Swallow Your Pride
Pride is a dangerously stupid thing. Why is it dangerous? You may have heard it said, “pride comes before the fall.” Well, it’s true, and sometimes that fall is not only painful to you but for those you either bring with you or that you fall onto. And why is pride stupid? Because it’s so unnecessary.
As a video editor, I constantly struggle with the “baby syndrome”. I’m editing away, I get the first rough cut done, I show it to some coworkers for feedback, and they give their two cents on the edit. That feedback often conflicts in some ways with my vision for the piece, so my defenses go up as I metaphorically cry out, “You’re wrong! This edit is my baby, and that’s that!” Why does that happen? Well, there could be a number of reasons, but what it all boils down to is pride. I get puffed up because I think that the approach I’ve come up with is clearly the right one, so when I receive feedback that butts heads with the work I’ve done, my pride takes a hit, and that hurts. At that point I have a choice – I can either swallow my pride and listen to the feedback, or maintain the walls I put up in an attempt to protect my ego. The choice is a critical one.
The times when I take a slap of criticism and choose to listen and apply the feedback rather than pushing back, I realize that often, the final edit is far better than my first. I’ve learned that I have a limited perspective (as do most people) so getting multiple sets of eyes on a project is paramount. Sometimes a couple little comments can be the key factors in turning a good video into a great one. Now, where pride gets dangerous is when it’s left unchecked. If I decide to be a lone ranger and climb on top of a high pedestal to get away from all other feedback or criticism, I set myself up for the inevitable fall that will follow. Pride hinders the necessary creative process of tweaking here and there in order to make the best product. It stunts growth. When that happens, it hurts the project you’re working on, which carries over to hurting the client and thus hurting you.
So, all in all, pride is dumb. Don’t feed it. Just swallow it as quickly as possible and bask in the freedom from pride.
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