I’m an arrogant sod.
That doesn’t mean I can’t admit I’m wrong… just that I don’t like doing it.
You can relate, I’m sure.
But we – and by we I mean all of us who always know best – need to remember there’s absolutely no shame in getting something wrong, realising we got something wrong and making a U-turn.
This can be hard to do, because we all love to be consistent. Consistent in how we see ourselves, and consistent in how we see other people.
That’s why politicians make a point of never changing their minds (even when it’s become clear their policies are utterly batshit) – because we’d hate them if they did.
Never mind the fact that we all know it was never a good idea in the first place. They’re flip-floppers. No backbone.
But it’s really important we’re capable of admitting when we’ve got something wrong, and that it’s time to do something new, in any area of life. I could witter about profit and throwing good money after bad here, but really this is true for anything: love, money, or pleasure.
Something you can do (and something I’ve been doing recently, though I forget where I got the idea) is try to remember, every morning, one thing you’ve been wrong about.
Write it down.
And don’t be ashamed when you build a long list. It only becomes foolish when you make the same mistake twice (though I’ve done that too, many times).
Having a record helps you not mind so much when you realise there’s another item to add to it.
That’s my first thought for the day.
Here’s the second:
If we have data, let’s look at data. If all we have are opinions, let’s go with mine.
– Jim Barksdale, former Netscape CEO
Clearly I try to live by that one too.