Breaking Our Dependence on Praise

by Susan Beaumont
“You like me. You really like me!” Let’s face it. We are all guilty of defining our self-worth by what others think. When people praise us we feel successful. Are we?
Courageous and adaptive leadership requires leaning into our own incompetence, and pointing out the incompetence of our congregations. Leading beyond our own competence will invite mistakes and failures. Mistakes and failures call forth criticism.
Anything really worth doing as a leader is going to involve criticism. How do we wean ourselves from a dependency on praise and teach ourselves and others to work well with criticism?