Casting Your Pearls Before Swine
When experiencing the high of a breakthrough in the creative process, our excitement can get the better of us and cause us to be overeager to share our work in hopes of getting immediate feedback. But I’ve learned over the years that sometimes it is best to resist that urge and proceed with caution. This is a pivotal moment in which it may even be unwise to bare your soul to just anyone, as you will be most vulnerable to anything that might negatively affect the final outcome of your work.
Rather, in the early stages of refinement I highly recommend seeking individuals out that you trust will give you thoughtful, quality feedback. Chances are, unless you have a shared interest, even the reaction of your closest friends and family will disappoint. Be aware, not everyone is going to get your specific vision, and that’s ok, but there will be those who do. Know your audience!
Only then can you truly decipher your successes and where you still need improvement, which will ultimately help you focus on your goals without distraction. While this verse below refers to more spiritual matters, I believe it still applies…
Do not give dogs what is holy; do not throw your pearls before swine. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and then turn and tear you to pieces. -Matthew 7:6
Perhaps that seems a bit dramatic, but the principal is true. When you share something from the heart with people who are unworthy, you’re not going to get the appropriate assessment you need to take it to the next level. Perhaps it might come in the form of harsh criticism, bad advice, or worse yet, indifference. Either way it all ends the same…your work is trampled upon and your spirit is torn to pieces. And who wouldn’t struggle to keep up enthusiasm in the face of such discouragement?
Reserve your work for people who share a passion for what you do. People who will truly appreciate your vision, encourage you to improve and meet goals by giving honest, helpful feedback, and not simply flattering words. Because even flattery is a trap that keeps us from doing our best work…
For there is no truth in their mouth; their inmost self is destruction; their throat is an open grave; they flatter with their tongue. -Psalm 5:9