Right Fighters: PART 1 – Why Your Need To Be Right Hurts Your Relationship
This blog post is the first in a series called “Right Fighters,” where you’ll learn how the need to be right hurts your relationships and how you can change your focus from being right to connecting more deeply.
Are you a Right Fighter?
Were you one of those know-it-all kids in school… so that if no one else knew the answer the teacher would look at you and ask:
“Do you know the answer?”
And without fail… you almost always knew.
If you’re being honest, didn’t it feel kinda good to be the one who had the answers? To hear so often… “That’s right, Jamie!”
We were so often rewarded in school for having the “right” answer”.
But what about the other 30 kids in your class?
If you were right most of the time, then it means that most of the time they were…
1 winner and 30 losers.
Still, it’s not too big of a deal in the classroom because many of us expect that in school. However, when that kind of attitude transfers from the classroom to relationships, the bruises from “losing” all the time hurt more.
A lot more.
I call these people…
What Is A Right Fighter?
You know who I’m talking about…
They’re right all the time and they let you know it.
Like in Jurassic Park when Dr. Ian Malcolm says to Dr. Alan Grant after the T-Rex breaks out,
“Boy, do I hate being right all the time!”
And they never lose a fight.
Regardless of the cost.
But in a marriage or relationship, sometimes it’s better to be wrong and choose connection over being right.
Other downsides to being a Right Fighter are that we can be…
- Critical of other people because we’re focused on correcting them instead of connecting with them
- Fearful of exploring because this could take us into new territories where we don’t “know” everything
- Afraid of being curious because we don’t want to ask a question that we don’t know the answer to (then people would know we don’t actually have all the answers… gasp!)
If someone is a Right Fighter, then it means that one person must be right and the other person must be wrong.
Again, a winner and a loser.
Because for the Right Fighter, being wrong feels like settling for second best.
The winner is trying to hold power over the other to stay in the winner’s circle. So this often means that the Right Fighter will eventually stop asking questions because they care more about being right than being curious.
And that hurts relationships.
Caring curiousity is one of the secrets to creating a powerful connection with your partner.
When we choose being right at all costs, we’re choosing winning over connection and that’s a competitive marriage.
On the other hand, a cooperative marriage is the complete opposite. It requires us to…
- Have curious questions
- Get out of our own shoes and into our partner’s
- Truly know our partner’s heart
- Be curious about what they need and want
Ultimately, creating a cooperative marriage means sometimes choosing all of these things – connection – over the need to be right.
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