Give up the Need to be Right | Fundamental #4

Be accountable is the hallmark of a strong leader

Keep your ego, your personal agenda, and your judgments out of the way of doing what’s best for the team or the customer.  Don’t let being right interfere with being able to hear others and see possible new solutions you haven’t seen before.


It is the commonest of mistakes to consider that the limit of our power of perception is also the limit of all there is to perceive.”   C.W. Leadbeater

Why are we so driven to be right?

Don’t we love it? Doesn’t it feel good to prove your point?

How long does that feeling last? Typically, not that long and we are searching for the next moment of validation of our opinions. It’s a never-ending loop that keeps us unconsciously stuck in our perceptions.

The ego depends on this loop for survival. There is a great cost in allowing our ego to lead that could result in lost revenue, disappointed customers, and a lack of growth.

How do we give up the need to right?

It’s actually scientific. According to Michael Pollan in his book, How To Change Your Mind, “Our brains are highly efficient structures that save us time and energy by developing reliable codes of perception and responses.”

This is how we become highly functional and get things done. We use these codes to make quick decisions and therefore think we are producing results rapidly and abundantly.

Pollan warns, “…here’s the downside: all that order hinders us from accessing new experiences and unlocking greater consciousness.” This is the part that can impact our success.

If we are unwilling to be curious about new possibilities, ideas, or process, we are limiting our potential growth and success. 
Leaders have multiple accomplishments that have led them to their role. While a company relies on that experience and wisdom, a powerful leader is one that can set aside that knowledge and be willing to lean in and listen to other solutions.

At Momentum Consulting, we coach our executives to listen from other’s points of view. This actually requires a willingness to be uncomfortable with the uncertainty.

As Pollen concludes, “We’d rather stick with the familiar patterns recognized by our brains than venture into the unknown. But without the latter, our consciousness is not expanded.”

The science is there. Our brains want to stay comfy and cozy as our default. However, that comfort has a big price.

If we are able to be uncomfortable and create expansion in our minds, we have an opportunity to move beyond our expectations. 

Are you a “my way or the highway” thinker, or can you be a “my way is only oneof the ways” thinker?

“The only means of strengthening one’s intellect is to make up one’s mind about nothing–to let the mind be a thoroughfare for all thoughts.” –John Keats

Can you be uncomfortable with an uncertainty of knowing? 

Do it once a day. See what you learn. Change your chemistry. Let us know what you experienced in the comments below.
Keeping an open mind,

Martha Lynn

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