“Do you want to be right or do you want to be kind?”
This was a question I came across many years ago in the personal development field. It is question I often use as a guide when considering my response to something, especially in a conflict situation when my buttons have been triggered!
And I know that there have been a number of times when my answer to this question has changed the way I have responded to a given situation…and 9 times out of 10, I choose to be kind.
I look back over my life and can see a number of life defining moments where I have chosen to be kind, even when I have evidence or back up to show the other person that I was ‘right’.
I choose to stay silent, because I can see their need, in that moment, is to be right. My proving otherwise could have consequences far greater than a short term slight dent in my ego!
And after years of following this philosophy, I am questioning my actions. Is it right for me to stay silent so they can feel better about themselves in the moment, even if I don’t? Is it OK to stay silent and allow others to hold opinions and beliefs that may be questionable or even wrong? Is it fair for someone else to continue making their informed choices without all the facts and information?
Am I staying silent in the moment simply because I’m less than keen on confrontation, so this is an easy way out and justifies, to me, that its OK to stay silent, because I am dressing it up as kindness?
Am I being too hard on myself here or am I at a defining crossroads in my life…Do I want to be right or do I want to be kind?
Upon reflection, having been on the receiving end of ‘right’ a number of times, I still choose to be kind. Even if I have an important point I would like to communicate, there are kind ways of doing it when the situation allows rather than in the heat of the moment!
I wonder what you would do when contemplating this same question?