“Don’t shoot the messenger”
“Don’t kill the messenger”
“Don’t kill the piano player he is doing the best he can.”
You may have heard the phrase, don’t kill the messenger. It means if someone has the unfortunate task of delivering bad news; don’t take it out on them. This phrase is frequently attributed to the ancient Greek and then later Roman custom of employing messengers to carry news throughout the empire. The law decreed that these messengers should be allowed to pass unharmed as they carried out their duty.
As for “Don’t kill the piano player”; well that expression allegedly originated in the United States in the Western Territory or “Wild West” in the 1860s.
How about a new phrase? Don’t kill the message. This applies when you receive information from someone who you may not like or respect. When someone you do not like tells you something, do you listen? Do you really pay attention to the message? There are two points I ask you to consider:
1) Just because you dislike someone does not mean that they do not have valuable ideas.
2) Some of the best information we can receive about how we are perceived may come from sources we do not always admire.
Try to understand the message, no matter who plays messenger. Then if the content of the message is not of value to you, go ahead, discard it. But pay attention and don’t kill the message.
Long live the message and the messenger