Derek Sivers

from the book “”:

I love being wrong

2014-09-09

Most of the time, I feel smart, successful, and driven — like I’ve got it all figured out. But last month a bunch of stuff knocked me on my ass. I’ve never felt so wrong.

I vulnerably called on friends for help. They gave me a bunch of good advice, and helped me see things from a new point of view. Each different perspective made me feel good for a while. Then I fell back into the whirlpool of destructive thoughts.

Whenever something has gone wrong in my life, I’ve asked myself, “What’s great about this?”

Usually I find an answer. But this time, my only answer was, “Nothing. This just sucks.” I tried asking it again every day or two, but the answer was the same.

Eventually, I had an epiphany. I actually love being wrong, even though it cracks my confidence, because that’s the only time I learn. I actually love being lost, even though it fuels fears, because that’s when I go somewhere unexpected.

I pursue being wrong and lost in small doses. I love little lessons that surprise my expectations and change my mind. If we’re not surprised, we’re not learning.

So I finally figured out what’s great about this. Getting knocked on my ass made me humble as hell. It’d been years since I’d called for help. It’d been years since I was so open to advice.

I smiled, thinking of how much I’d learned from my friends this past month. I realized how ultimately happy it makes me to be so empty, even if it really hurts at first. It’s better than thinking I’ve got it all figured out.