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The Graffiti Machine

May 30, 2024

An interesting section of the book How to Win Friends and Influence People discusses the value of being comfortable with the possibility of being wrong. Even if you 'know' you're right, starting a sentence with "I may be wrong, but this is how I see it" seems to be a much better way to have a conversation.
I put 'know' in quotes because even if you feel very strongly about being right, it's hard to really know for sure. One thing that comes to mind is the viral photo of a dress that circulated some years back. You may have seen it. It's a striped dress that stirred up a lot of arguments because people were roughly divided in half on what colors the stripes were: black and blue, or white and gold?
There are other examples of these visual and auditory phenomena where two people can see and hear completely different things. Can't the same be said about our perception of information we receive? It's possible for two people to perceive the same information in completely different ways, so it's hard to definitively say who is right.
Being okay with being wrong demonstrates humility and—in my opinion—can turn many conversations into learning opportunities rather than arguments.
This is a little longer than usual, but I wanted to end this with a quote from Socrates “All I Know Is That I Know Nothing”
These podcasts (starting with this episode) also now have video. If you want to check out the episodes with video, check them out on YouTube.