Antifragile attitude in software development

📄 Wiki page | 🕑 Last updated: May 25, 2023

"Anti-fragile attitude" when it comes to criticism is not built by tolerance. Quite the opposite actually. It is a common misconception. While making yourself numb against criticism IS a solution but not by far the best one.

A high criticism tolerance is learned by understanding that ones self worth is not attached to output or delivery. (This is hard in our industry) It comes from self-acceptance and compassion. And these values are learned early on. You'll find that the people that break down at the slightest criticism the most are those that were criticised the most as children as well. Those that had no room for being anything other than perfect. Where value was obtained from performance.

To take it even further...why see it as criticism at all? You are not your lines of code.

(from the HN discussion on Ask HN: How do you not take criticism of your work personally?)

This is an incredibly important thing to keep in mind - especially in this industry, which is constantly pushing us to identify ourselves with our work, with "our lines of code".

If you want to explore this further, there's a concept called anattā In Buddhism, which basically says that no unchanging, permanent self or essence can be found in any phenomenon. It boils down to this phrase: "This is not me; this is not mine, I am not this".

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