It might seem that always being right is something to aim for, but in fact it’s both paralysing and dangerous.
Paralysing because the need to always be right means that we can’t ever risk getting anything wrong. Dangerous because it means that we are likely to ignore all evidence to the contrary as we go blithely off down our own path of righteousness.
It’s this need to be right which causes arguments with your loved ones, and ultimately wars.
We don’t want to let go of everything that we have invested in being ‘right’, and we certainly don’t want the humiliation of being proved ‘wrong’.
What about trusting our intuition?
I’m all for having faith in ourselves and trusting our intuition. Constantly second guessing ourselves isn’t a comfortable place to be either. But we also need to recognise that we will inevitably get things wrong. A LOT. And that this is absolutely as it should be.
Viewed from this perspective, our lives can be seen as a series of experiments, from which we learn more and more. If we find ourselves making the same mistake twice, or more than that, that simply means we weren’t quite ready yet to learn what we needed to. In time, we will- unless we are grimly hanging onto the belief that we are always right.
If we don’t accept that possibility that we could get things wrong, or that what we thought was intuition was really fear, then we can keep banging our heads against the same brick wall for the rest of our lives.
So, we need to be always open to the possibility, or even likelihood, that we have got things wrong. This doesn’t need to leave us afraid to take action, because getting things wrong can be positive, and a way of getting the information we need.
What about analysis paralysis?
Questioning whether you are right is not the same thing as being unable to take action in case you get it wrong. The latter is all about fear, and a subtle Troll strategy to keep you stuck. If you constantly second guess yourself and look for more and more information before making a decision, and ask for the opinion of everyone you know, that isn’t helpful.
Instead it’s about taking what feels like the right action at the time, based on what you know, and your intuition- but never assuming that you won’t therefore make some mistakes along the way. It is about trusting yourself, but a big part of that trust being a trust in yourself to deal with the cock-ups you will inevitably make, and learn from them. That’s what true self confidence is, not an unshakeable faith in your inability to make mistakes in the first place.