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Louise Kinnear
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Louise Kinnear   My Press Releases

The Cost Of Being Right - A High Price To Pay (part one)

Published on 7/2/2019
For additional information  Click Here

One of the highest prices we pay in life is the cost of being right.

Some of us will sacrifice almost anything just in order to be the last one standing.

A person who had been surrounded by their peers now sits alone, safe in the knowledge that he or she is right in their viewpoint even though they have alienated everyone around them.

The ego is a mighty powerful entity if left unchecked.

Have you ever attempted to reason with a child who knows everything?

It’s their way or no way at all.

They simply cannot understand the concept of another person’s point of view.

Children go through a stage where they are extremely self-absorbed.

Everything is ‘mine’ and they will not share.

The world revolves around their desires and needs.

This is a normal stage of childhood where the child is asserting their individuality and independence.

The problem arises when the behavior is carried over into adulthood.

People who need to be right have little patience for others.

They perceive their ideas as the right way to do things and their viewpoints as the right way to think.

A differing opinion is a direct affront to their sense of well-being and they become extremely aggressive in their defense of themselves.

They tend to alienate others due to their insistence on being ‘right’.

The importance of the issue in question doesn’t seem to have any relevance.

A simple trip to the store can end in disaster. Anger and a lack of empathy seem to be the rule of thumb.

People are different. We each have a totally unique set of DNA that will never be replicated short of cloning.

I do not think the same as you do and vice-versa.

Our brains are wired differently.

What seems totally natural and easy for me to do may be close to impossible for you.

Oftentimes we get caught in the thought pattern, ” If I can see this so clearly, why in the world can’t you?” “If I can perform this task, why can’t you?”

But the reality is that just because I can do something does not mean that you can.

Nor does it make me better or right, just different.

What is right and wrong?

I bake a cake a certain way and I determine that it is the ‘right’ way to bake a cake.

Yet, my next-door neighbour uses an entirely different method and guess what?

Her cake is just as good.

Short of a cake being inedible, there is no right or wrong, just different ways of baking the cake.

Some ways may be more efficient, true. But not necessarily the only way of doing it.

Webster’s dictionary states the following as a definition of the word right: conforming to facts or truth; most favorable or desired.

Can someone’s opinion or idea be right because it is considered as conforming to the truth or a fact?

By the way, whose truth? Or better yet, two viewpoints can each conform to the truth so which one is more right?

Can someone’s stand on a subject be the most favorable or desired? That is highly relative and I think that is the point. It’s all relative.

Having to be right seems to be more akin to the definition of self-righteous which Webster’s defines as convinced of one’s own righteousness (being right) especially in contrast with the actions and beliefs of others: narrow-mindedly moralistic.

Aha! Now we are getting closer. Someone who needs to be right would seem to be self-righteous,i.e. someone who feels that their way of seeing and doing things is superior to that of others.


What also pops up for me on the subject of being right is what often happens in a divorce.

We all have stories of an acrimonious divorce where two people spend insane amounts of money to argue about trivialities just to get even and be in the right.

The antagonists will pay their lawyers thousands of dollars in a fight over a living room chair just for the sake of besting the other person.

Once again it shows the price people are willing to pay in support of their ego.

Why the intense need to be right?

Myriad reasons come to mind: self esteem issues, low self-confidence, the past running the present, remnants of childhood adaptations, ego-centric behavior…the list goes on and on.

I am of the opinion that it isn’t so much the reasons (although it is important to understand why we do certain things) behind why we need to be right rather the self-knowledge that we are indeed involved in this kind of self-destructive behavior.

We must first become aware of our need to be right and then examine the costs involved in our behavior.

What are the costs of being right?

We come across as a know-it-all, which alienates people.

We are unyielding and do not work well with others so we have a tendency not to be part of the team or community.

We isolate ourselves.

We turn away connectedness and love.

We become an island unto ourselves.

Most impactful is the fact that we close ourselves off to what the world has to offer because we know best.

“…people find it far easier to forgive others for being wrong than being right.”

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