“The cost of being wrong is less than the cost of doing nothing.”
Okay, so it is time for me to admit I am wrong — again. You may remember a few months back when I admitted that I had bought into the concept that success required hard work, struggle, and hardship. I admitted I was wrong. Success is only hard, and a struggle, and a hardship if I (and you) think it is. Well, I am wrong about something else that I have taught since 2004. Achieving happiness should not be the primary focus of my teachings (or your lives). Achieving a sense of well-being is the ultimate reward of a successful life.
Let me explain.
In 2003/2004, I participated in a certification program with Marty Seligman and Ben Dean to become an Authentic Happiness Coach. That was when I was formally trained in the science of positive psychology. The six months I invested in that program changed my life and my business life. I rarely mentioned the certification because I already had my PhD and I held a bias about coaching programs. During my training however, Marty encouraged us to spread the word about the science of positive psychology and its research applications to daily life. I gladly took up that charge and invested many a TV segment and book blog review to that effort.
By the time Marty published Flourish in 2011, it was clear his conceptualization for the field was not to be grounded in the study of happiness as an end state, but in the multifaceted impact of developing positive emotions, engagement, relationships, meaning and achievement throughout your life. Those are the pieces of life success and satisfaction.
And, I was resistant. Not to the research but to the ability for my clients and my audience to care. PERMA needed to be explained. Being happy everyone seemed to be able to explain (or not) for themselves. Then I noticed something. My peer group may have thought it took too much explaining and only wanted the short answer to how to get and be happy, but I noticed the youngest generation of workers and business creators were only willing to accept the multidimensional approach. I grew up in a ‘resources are scarce’ world. They only know a world where potential seems unlimited and ever expanding. Check out my conversation with Andy Proctor at 2:42 of the above video.
“If you’re not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original.”
Sr. Ken Robinson
Dr. Success Challenge: Think of times you realized you were wrong in your business. Integrate those instances and learnings into your conversations. Keep the learning alive. Keep yourself evolving and allow original thoughts to emerge.