Often we worry about being right. But I think we should be spending more time being wrong.
Because sometimes, in life, being wrong is the most right you can be.
This sounds strange, I know. But that doesn’t mean it’s false.
You see, we live in a world that is obsessed with being right.
The schools we went to taught us that getting A’s, 100%s, 4.0 GPAs was the way to be.
And we learned that if we followed that paradigm of always being right, it would lead to success, riches—our dreams.
But that’s not how our post-school lives work. Real-life isn’t about being right. It operates quite differently. There aren’t A’s, 100%s, 4.0s here—no.
Work isn’t about perfection. It’s about creativity, ideation, iteration.
And, relationships are murky, muddled, messy. And no one is acing that class.
Life isn’t school.
Trying to be right all of the time makes us paralyzed, inflexible, ineffective.
Often, it keeps us from being our best. It makes us play it safe, take fewer risks, live less life.
And that, in my opinion, isn’t how most of us really want to be like. We want more. And, I think, we should.
To do that, we need to be wrong more.
See, there are times to “move fast and break things” to err on the side of doing things without knowing if those things we’re doing will work.
We need to experiment.
I’m not saying to be wrong just to be wrong.
No, that’s dumb.
What I mean is that we should be trying to do things that we’re unsure about, that are uncertain, you know—risky. And we’re not doing that for just any reason. We’re doing that for a very specific purpose—to reach our dreams.
But, going after them can make us wrong. What I mean is that you’ll make a lot of mistakes. What you do will be filled with failures and imperfections. That’s what happens when you pursue a dream: you’re wrong, a lot.
But, when we make errors, that’s when we can find corrections. Problems allow us to create solutions. Without an error, we often don’t know what to correct and how to move forward.
But the good thing about mistakes is that they are rarely final. After we make a mistake, most of us get retakes. We get to try again. We get second chances, and third chances, and fourth chances, etc.
And that’s where the magic happens. That’s where we get opportunities to learn from that wrong and make it better.
You can take a failed experiment, a terrible proposal, an ill-timed investment, a shuttered company, a broken relationship, and study them. And you’ll begin to understand what went wrong and how it could have been different, better and glean the lessons you need to succeed in the future.
Then, on a retake, apply those learnings when you try again in that next experiment, proposal, investment, company, relationship. Because as long as you are alive, you will have retakes.
Take them. And make the best of them. Take all of the wrongs and make them better.
And over the years and decades, you’ll see that you’ll be far more right than you would have ever been if you were only trying to be right. You’ll even live your best life.
In fact, you’ll have lived a dream.