About “Joyous Corrections” and Other Oxymorons …

Mistake - chalk board - Morguefile

“Ah … Excuse Me … That’s Not Right”

My minister used this phrase recently when someone pointed out an error in a statement he had made … yes, we are that kind of church:)

This sparked my thinking about why we usually do not associate “Joyous” or even “Happy” with having to admit we were wrong about something.  

Whether in church, at work, or just hanging around the house, wherever we interact with others, this seems a bit of a problem for some of us.

After much thought, I finally decided that we do not enjoy correcting ourselves just because we ARE


We get mad sometimes when someone else points out that we have made an error.  How dare they speak the truth?


We often do not elevate that person in our perceived esteem, but lower them to a some level of hell reserved for those who correct us in public.


Well, being caught in saying something wrong just does not fit with our self-image and most of us probably do not like being exposed as less than perfect. 

So we just ARE …  but as leaders and managers, we cannot just leave it at “That’s just the way it is”, at least not if we take our work and our professional identity seriously.

Now, what CAN we do about this?  Some suggestions follow …

Question your anger when another speaks the truth and look inward for the source of your emotion.  After all, our emotion does come from within us … you cannot blame another for how you feel.

Learn to celebrate the gift of receiving another’s help by recognizing how their courage in speaking up will ultimately help you.  This does require a certain “flip” in our thinking about how and from where we receive help.

Get over yourself … nobody is perfect, and trying to live up to that ideal is both impossible and very wearing.   Except for me, because I am perfect … just saying …

Who says I don’t pay attention in church?

Learning to let go of that ego and accept help in different forms in the Heartland ….


Image:  Morguefile.com