Three little words that can change your life…I was wrong. (6 of ?)

Sometimes the simplest little things can have big impact on our lives. In this series of posts I examine very short sentences (each just three words long) that can make a difference in your life. If you have a three word sentence that changed your life somehow, share it with me and I will share it with the world.

My second post in this series was probably the toughest for many, especially the men in the audience. It was the I need help post.  Boy the three words for today are tough to say for many, too – “I was wrong.” Sometimes it’s because the corollary is, “You were right.” Not only are we loath to admit or own error, for some reason we are reluctant to allow the other person the satisfaction of being right.

It is the highest form of self-respect to admit our errors and mistakes and make amends for them. To make a mistake is only an error in judgment, but to adhere to it when it is discovered shows infirmity of character. – Dale Turner

angry coupleWhatever the circumstances or reason, the best course it always to swallow your injured pride and admit that you were wrong. Just as important, if this was something between two people; you need to admit that the other party was right. It may also be the time to apologize if you made a big deal out of belittling their correct position on the matter, as some are want to do; or maybe you just put a little too much emphasis on the correctness of your position vs. theirs. In either case, you were wrong. Admit it. Don’t stop at, I was wrong” proceed directly to “and you were right” and try to start repairing the damage that you may have caused, perhaps even asking for forgiveness about how you handled the original argument.

 Mistakes are always forgivable, if one has the courage to admit them.- Bruce Lee

So have the courage to admit your errors when you are wrong and show others that you can learnblowhard
from your mistakes. Not doing so may lead people to believe that you are an idiot, too stupid to realize your mistakes; or, worse, an obnoxious boor, too uncouth and belligerent to reverse
yourself even in the face of the truth of your error. Neither conclusion will result in other people wanting to spend time with you. We all know some insufferable blowhards that we try to avoid. Don’t be that guy/gal.

In marriages a liberal use of both the three words of the day and it corollary will ensure harmony. In fact Ogden Nash is quoted as taking that one step further in this little couplet –

To keep your marriage brimming, With love in the loving cup, Whenever you’re wrong, admit it; Whenever you’re right, shut up.

It can do almost as much harm to gloat over being right as being bull headed about being wrong. caringSo, be quietly confident in knowing that you are right and wait for the light bulb to come on in the other person’s head. Sometimes that never happens, a condition for which the term dim bulb was coined; but, don’t say that to them out loud; then, you’d be wrong, too.

I must admit to being quite an expert on today’s topic or at least well practiced, since I get the opportunity more often than I care to admit to practice them. Fortunately I have an understanding wife who puts up with the little things and calls me on the bigger ones. Most of the time she was right.

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