September 25, 2023   7:08pm

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From the TED Conference: Why being wrong is all right … and why being attached to “rightness” is a huge problem.

Get through the first minute or so and this TED talk is truly worthwhile to watch. The speaker Kathryn Schulz talks about why “we get stuck with this problem of being right” and that you can, indeed, step outside this problem. But, first, you need to recognize it. As she says: ” It does feel like something to be wrong, it feels like being right … we have no internal clue until it’s too late.”

“This internal sense of rightness that we all experience so often is not a reliable guide to what is actually going on in the external world. And when we act like it is, and we stop entertaining the possibility that we could be wrong, well, that’s when we end up doing things like dumping 200 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico or torpedoing the global economy. So this is a huge practical problem. But it’s also a huge social problem.”

“We think one thing is going to happen and something else happens instead.”

The speaker is Kathryn Schulz, who is the author of Being Wrong: Adventures in the Margin of Error and writes “The Wrong Stuff,” a Slate series featuring interviews with high-profile people about how they think and feel about being wrong.

So watch the talk, and the next time you stick in your heels, know you could possibly be mistaken.

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