Ever thought how useful it would be to be always right? Over time, one has the opportunity to make many mistakes and regrettably, a lesser number of successes. My track record is as chequered as a new weave of tartan.
When I look back at the things that I got right, I feel very humble. Rare though they may be, these are the things that most helped me get to where I am today. I know! Don’t remind me!
It’s true for us all, though. Sometimes we do get things right – thank goodness. And serendipitous though these occurrences may appear to be, they are very important to our self-esteem.
There have been many occasions when I have looked back smugly on happenings that turned out just the way I’d expected. I may even have spoken to friends and acquaintances or work-mates about how I thought things may turn out and got some opposition to my opinion at the time.
But have you ever noticed how unpopular you can be when, through the passage of time, you are proved right and you crow, “I told you so”?
People’s reactions can be such a put down to a know-it-all who’s right. Even if it’s just the once. The fact is, people rarely want to hear that time honoured assertion.
No win situation
It’s been my experience with this that’s taught me to button up when these superior occasions arise. I find it difficult. Often, my attitude gives the game away, even if I don’t say a word. I get quite petulant. I feel it’s simply not fair - I just can’t win.
Dale Carnegie eloquently explains the social consequences of being proved right and saying so. It’s not exactly how to win friends and influence people - hence the title of his book, I guess.
So how does one cover for this? Is the answer to be always wrong? That could be just as problematic. In any case, the chances of being always wrong are probably similar to the chances of being always right. It’s never as consistent as you might like it to be.
But on the occasions when I just know I’m going to be proved right and I say as much, the words are often out before I have a chance to consider the long-term consequences of my utterances. Short of getting a tonguectomy, what is there that a bear of little brain can do?