Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Why do we feel such a strong urge to deny our mistakes? Sustainability marks the difference between wasted efforts and a bright future. Living without stress

Few things in life are as difficult as acknowledging mistakes, in particular those that we have made out of conviction. Choosing an unsuitable profession or marrying the wrong person generate a myriad of negative consequences. Many who suffer from those situations hang to their errors with unshakable determination.

Why do we feel such a strong urge to deny our mistakes? 


Why do we often devote efforts to looking for excuses rather than solutions? Refurbishing a building with structural problems is pure waste; even if you paint the ceiling and plaster the walls, problems will remain and continue to grow.

In retrospect, it is easy to identify dead-end projects. If we look back at Alexander the Great, we can see that his dream of conquering the world was a foolish adventure. Similarly, if we look back at the Byzantine Empire, we can see how the erosion of principles ruined its legal system.


Sustainability marks the difference between wasted efforts and a bright future

On the other hand, acknowledging that a beloved current activity may be a dead-end project is a whole different question. Human beings seldom stop detrimental actions even when errors become apparent; instead, we come up with a hundred reasons in favour of continuing what is manifestly unworkable. We do not want to lose face by admitting that we have made a mistake.

A feasible plan leads to a better future; a hopeless proposition, to endless stress. High-quality service leads to satisfied customers; wasteful chaos, to regrets. Learning valuable skills leads to increased productivity; senseless memorizing, to unbearable boredom.
Sustainability marks the difference between difficult undertakings and dead-end enterprises.


For more information about rational living and personal development, I refer you to my book The 10 Principles of Rational Living

Text: http://johnvespasian.blogspot.com

Image by fazen under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us

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