There’s no better test of a man’s integrity than his behavior when he is wrong. Marvin Williams, professional basketball player
In my seventy-seven years, I’ve frequently been wrong—about people, politics, driving directions, the weather, Nebraska’s chance of having a winning football season, etc. I like to think I’m pretty good about admitting I’m wrong but, at times, I say nothing as a way of protecting myself.
In an opinion piece for the New York Times newsletter, Jane Coaston, wrote, “Refusing to admit you’re wrong may be intended as self-protection but is really self-deception, which hurts you and your community. Like any untruth, it destroys trust and harms relationships on every level.”
It seems that we are living in a culture that, rather than admitting fault, focuses on the faults of others. Jane thinks so too. She sums up, “It’s driving us all into a moral and social ditch.” I agree.
Affirmation: I will admit I’m wrong when appropriate.
Coaching questions: Are you focused on admitting fault when it fits or focusing on the faults of others? Is there a falsehood or wrong you need to own up to? How will you go about doing this?
Photo by Hello I’m Nik on Unsplash
One thought on “Admitting I’m Wrong”
A huge part of being able to admit a mistake/being wrong is not having to fear consequences. On a deadline, a staff that I supervised filled out overnight delivery labels backwards and the documents were delivered to our office the day they were due somewhere else. She was so relieved when my response was, “Let’s see what we can do about this.” We worked it out and all was good.
I learned that response when, a few years earlier, I walked into my bosses office and said “I can’t believe what I just did!” and he replied with the exact same response.