“You’re right, Aileen”. I like to joke a little whenever anyone says that to me in conversation. After all, it’s usually just a throw away comment. A verbal tic. It’s not meant as a deeply considered judgement of what I’ve said or what I think or even who I am. So my light-hearted response is “I’m always right.” Of course, I know I’m not.
Yet it’s easier to say I’m right, than it is to say “I’m wrong”. Much easier.
As the early years of my sixtieth decade fly past (and they do), I often find myself contemplating all the times in my life when it might have benefited me to just say “I’m wrong”. Not that it’s a case of proving who’s right and who is wrong, since that’s never wholly the case either way. It’s simply that we are coming from different perspectives, judgements or experiences. Oh that there might be no judgement or fear when exclaiming “I’m wrong”. I wonder how our conversations might shift when, as opposed to investing energy in trying to prove things one way or the other, you might just say aloud, ‘I’m wrong’. Try it now – I have a sense that as soon as I don’t need to prove my perspective, and I say I’m wrong – even silently inside myself – I feel a release of energy. My whole body relaxes. It subtly stops fighting and struggling. It says I’m OK.
In my heart and mind I can now go back over time and admit ‘I was wrong’ on all of those occasions which ended up in tension, debate, argument or even breakdown. It’s a healing feeling – and I don’t often use that word. I’m reminded of the famous Rumi quote:
“Out beyond the ideas of right-doing and wrongdoing, there is a field I will meet you there. It’s the world full of things to talk about.”
Your turn: where might it bring relief to you to simply admit, to yourself or to others, that you are wrong? what do you notice when you do so? what pulls you into trying to prove you are right? what opens up beyond that idea for you? #Live Fully