How Might I Be Wrong?
Each of us has the capacity to optimize our life experience so that we are aligned with our true essence and unlimited potential as a Creator. We don’t need to remain in fixed patterns of reactivity and drama.
Once we taste success, however, we become very attached to our way of thinking. We might say to ourselves, “This is the way I do something,” which is a useful approach to success. If we become overly attached to “This is how we do it,” we can dig in and develop a closed mind.
All too often we can be blind to our own fixed habits of thought. We see shortcomings in others far sooner than we see them in ourselves! If this happens, we’re limiting our ability to meet the challenges of these very fast-paced and complex times. Therefore, we need ways to test our treasured habits and opinions.
How do we stay open without overly doubting what we think is true? It is a balancing act, for sure, to stay rooted in our values and ideas while keeping our heart and mind open to new possibilities.
Here is a question that can help you reflect upon your ideas while remaining open to what you may be missing. Next time you catch yourself advocating for your perspective or “the right way” to do something, ask yourself:
“How might I be wrong?”
It can be a very scary moment when you are willing to be wrong. Putting your strongly held notions at risk is a key marker to challenge yourself to grow and develop. One of the essential skills for human beings is to “hold lightly” our most treasured opinions or habits, whether you are a leader of an organization or co-creating in your community and neighborhood.
Improving the way you observe your thinking depends upon your ability to notice, how you think! If you can frequently ask yourself, “How might I be wrong?” you will build your capacity to self-observe and listen to yourself make meaning of the situation at hand. The magic that happens is that other people will notice your open and genuine curiosity and seek your views far more than when you lived in the land of certainty.
But many times our most beloved ways of doing things can cause us to struggle when new situations and circumstances are more complex than the previous thinking that created our old opinions and habits in the first place.
When you honestly take inventory of your own strongly held views, you are more likely to see that what is obvious to you is not necessarily obvious to the other person. With this epiphany you then realize that what is clear to the other person, may not be clear to you.
The economist John Kenneth Galbraith wrote: “Faced with a choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so, almost everyone gets busy on the proof.”
Asking yourself, “How might I be wrong?” opens you to the possibility of seeing how your cherished ideas and fixed habits can limit possibilities for yourself as well as those with whom you live and work. If you do not have a way to think about the way you think, you won’t realize that you have a choice about what you think!