Posts Tagged ‘thick skin’

‘A thick skin is a gift from God’ – advice for introducing new ideas

Monday, November 5, 2007

Some useful thoughts at Creative Think, about being prepared for criticism and ridicule when introducing new ideas; here’s some historical context –

Use_your_shield_260“New ideas can be threatening, and they often provoke a negative reaction.

For example, when the composer Igor Stravinsky first presented his Rite of Spring ballet with its unusual harmonies and primitive rhythms, he was met with a rioting audience.

When Johannes Kepler correctly solved the orbital problem of the planets by using ellipses rather than circles, he was denounced.

When the nineteenth-century Hungarian physician Ignaz Semmelweiss suggested to his fellow doctors that they could reduce disease by washing their hands in chlorinated lime water before inspecting their patients, he was ridiculed by his colleagues who strongly resented the idea that they were “carrying around death on their hands.”

Be prepared for such a reaction and don’t let it prevent you from acting. As German statesman Konrad Adenauer put it, “A thick skin is a gift from God.”

How strong is your shield?”