Timshel

On Being Right

I’ve recently been listening to an audio recording of the book The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck. The book presents truths in a direct and unpolished way, which is why it is so endearing. One of the ideas in the book is that happiness results from having good values and good metrics. This involves placing value on interesting problems that make you feel happy and fulfilled and then being able to easily measure your progress in working through these problems.

One of the values that Mark Manson identifies as misguided is the need to be right. We all have an innate desire to be right all the time, but this certainly isn’t a healthy need. In all reality, we are wrong almost all of the time.

If you think back 100 years to what people believed, it’s almost laughable. 100 years from now, people will be thinking the same thing about us. This is true even of ourselves. Occasionally I feel contempt towards the Grant of ten years ago. He was so naïve and stupid! That’s couldn’t have been me, right? Give it five more years and I’ll be having this internal conversation again, except the butt of the joke will be me, right now.

So next time you base your actions on the need to be proven right, just remember that you’re probably wrong anyway and you should probably pick a different motive. You’ll be happier for it.

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