If you tell me that I are wrong, expect me to react negatively. But I’m ok with being flawed.
No-one likes being wrong
Regardless of whether or not it is true, no-one likes being told that they are wrong. It could be a child with a simple math problem, a new mom disciplining her child, or an esteemed scientist preserving a paper to an audience of peers; being told that you are wrong hurts. Indeed, it can hurt so much that your instinctive reaction is anger, denial that you are wrong, and resistance to guidance. The more the other person pursues their accusation the stronger the resistance to guidance. So use the word flawed instead.
Not politically correct babble
You might be thinking that this is just some politically correct babble but consider this – do you have such a negative reaction to flawed as you do wrong? I’m guessing that you don’t, because flawed implies that at least some part of your argument/reasoning/approach is correct but that at some point you misinterpreted/misread/misunderstood/missed an element and got off-track. For example, if I worked on a math equation and determined that 5 is the value for X, my final answer may be wrong but how I attempted to solve the equation was correct. As such, my work in solving the equation contains a flaw that, once corrected, yields the correct value for X.
New pet parent
I remember when I initially became a new pet parent. There was a lot to learn in a short space of time and at times it became overwhelming. So there were times when I bristled when told that I was walking the dog wrong, or giving mixed signals to the animal, or not brushing it correctly etc. Part of the problem was that I had no prior experience with walking a dog but I’d also seen it done enough times in movies, books and real life to have some basic grasp of the concept (sadly I usually only had a basic grasp of the leash as my dog Sandy dragged me along behind her). In essence, my dog walking technique was flawed. With training I was able to address the flaw (ok, flaws) and dog walking became a far more enjoyable activity for both of us.
Applying it in real life
One of the benefits of using the word flawed to correct someone is that it implicitly acknowledges that they did some or most of the behavior or activity correctly. This implicit acknowledgement will usually inhibit the natural tendency to anger and the subsequent conversation will be far more constructive and civilized.
An additional benefit of using the word flawed is that it allows you to save face if instead you are the one in error because you misinterpreted/misread/misunderstood/missed an element. A final benefit is that, if you are indeed the one at fault, the other person will likely be far more conciliatory toward you than they would be had you accused them of being wrong to begin with.
Putting it into practice is easy. The next time you feel compelled to accuse them of being wrong, accuse them of being flawed instead and watch how the ensuring conversation progresses. You may not gain a new friend in the process but you will likely avoid gaining an enemy.
Have you tried using flawed instead of wrong and seen how powerful the word replacement can be? Comment below and let me know.
I’m an Independent Brand Partner of Nerium™ International, I’m eliminating my wrinkles and fine lines effortlessly with NeriumAD, and you’ll always find great information about NeriumAD and Nerium™ International at my website: http://shywitness.arealbreakthrough.com/