The High Cost of Being Right

You can be right or you can have great connections...and you can never have them both!

Being right and having a rich life experience are opposites, and costly. In order to be right, you have to make the other person wrong. This destroys connection with the other person.  It invites conflict and it creates separation, distrust, and certainly does not foster collaboration and cooperation.  And the list goes on. When you have the connection and are focused on the kind of outcome you are going doesn't matter who's right, and separation and conflict disappear.

We all have been highly trained to be right.  There's a right and a wrong answer to everything.  Being right is being the winner, no matter what the cost. Being right is being better than.  Being right is overrated!  It's very costly in relationships. Particularly the ones that are most important to you.

I saw this demonstrated with a former client. Whenever she had an argument with her husband, many times she would go into a reactionary mode and become positioned to be right, from her perspective.  Her mate was of course, positioned to be right from his perspective.  It always resulted in hurt feelings, and days of disconnection. 

Enter the communication pattern and underlying aspect of Improv referred to as Yielding.  This skill is vital in Improv, as it helps to move a scene along, focused on creating a collaborative outcome.  When applying yielding in relationships, it's about keeping the connection with the other person, and respond instead of react to what is being said.

With yielding as her desired pattern of communication with her mate, she reminded herself of the outcome she really wanted -- be that a deeper connection, having a good time in the moment.  To yield in the moment, she would say, "I'm really sorry.  This isn't how I want to be.   Will you please forgive me?"   Like magic, this instantly melted any resistance he had towards her. The upset disappeared and there was the opportunity to create a new experience.

It didn't matter if she was right or wrong, or if she should be forgiven or not. She didn't care. She just wanted to get the experience of the connection back in her relationship.

This was a powerful example of what is available for all of us. We can choose to have richer outcomes or we can choose to be right. Personally, I would rather have a richer outcome. What are you more interested in?

Being right destroys trust, connection, energy, fun, and love. It also sabotages your effectiveness. When you are being right, you are stuck in a single point of view. This keeps you in a state of tunnel vision and prevents you from seeing anything else. Solutions and opportunity that would otherwise be available, won't be available to you.

It is more important to see clearly than to be stuck in a point of view. In fact, the more curious you can be,  and be open to that which you don't know, the more you can see. This will certainly open the door wide to better and richer solutions and opportunity!