Back when I was a teenager, I remember giving my mum a LOT of lectures on why she should buy margarine instead of butter. I couldn’t understand why she was so resistant to making the switch – Didn’t she realise that margarine lowered cholesterol? That it was better for your heart? That so many TV ads, newspapers, and magazine articles said it was the superior choice?
…Ha! My how things change!
You can probably imagine how embarrassed I felt a few years later, during my holistic nutrition and health coach training, when I learned that margarine is, like, the devil of fake foods, and that butter – especially if it’s grass-fed and organic – is not only a million times tastier, but also a million times healthier than its chemical-infused counterpart.
I remember ringing up my mum one day to sheepishly tell her that she was right and that I had been wrong on the whole issue: butter was, in fact, better. (My mum, of course, being one of the best humans on the planet, didn’t skip a beat or rub it in; she just continued to ask what else I was learning in my course. #MumsAreTheBest)
Her gracious reaction didn’t change the fact that I was embarrassed though: I had so firmly (and so loudly!) believed I was right, only to find myself doing a complete 180 degree spin on the issue. It was a humbling experience, to say the least.
Of course, admitting you were wrong about something as trivial as which spread to use on your morning toast is one thing…
What happens when you have to change your mind and admit you were wrong on something that’s ACTUALLY important?
What if you’ve spent tens of thousands of dollars on education and worked your tushie to the bone in order to land your ‘dream job’… only to realise 6-months later that it’s not right for you?
What if you’ve relocated your entire family to a new city (after years of convincing your husband it was the right move)… only to discover that you’re desperately unhappy in your new life and want to go back?
What if you spent your whole life loudly and proudly declaring that you NEVER want to be a stay-at-home mama / have a corporate job / live in the suburbs … only to wake up one morning and find that that’s exactly what you want more than anything in the world?
What should you do when you realise you were ‘wrong’ about a big life decision, but there’s a giant part of you that doesn’t want to admit it?
For starters, let’s reframe the whole situation.
It might sound trite but it’s 100% true, beautiful – You made the best decision you could with the information and tools you had at the time. Now that you know better, you can choose again. You’re simply making a new choice.
And let’s be real: There are so many things in life that you can’t possibly know until you’ve actually experienced them. It’s like a scientific experiment: though you might have a hypothesis, how can you ever truly know how Chemical A will react with Chemical B until you’ve shoved them in a beaker together?
Likewise, how can you know how you’ll fare in a particular job environment or relationship until you’ve given it a go?
You weren’t ‘wrong’ – you made the best decision with the information you had at the time.
In these circumstances, changing your mind about something isn’t ‘failure’; it’s simply learning more about yourself and what’s best (and NOT best) for you. Just like Thomas Edison’s experiments helped him rule out thousands of different options until he finally hit upon one that worked, you’re simply trying out different options for yourself until you finally hone in on your own light-bulb moment… You’ve made a discovery, not a mistake.
Don’t Let Your Mean Girl Keep You Trapped In A Position You Don’t Want To Be In
‘You’re so flaky and unreliable.’
‘How could you have been so stupid?’
‘People will think you’re an idiot if you change your mind now.’
Admitting that you need to make a change is a fertile feeding ground for your Mean Girl. She’ll take it as permission to beat you up and rub in just how worthless you really are… So don’t let her!
Whenever she pipes up, gently remind her (and yourself!) that you’re doing the very best you can, and just like everyone else, you deserve love and the chance to choose again: ‘I did the best that I could with the information I had. Now I’m standing in my power and making a new choice that’s more aligned with my truth.’
Don’t Stick With A Bad Decision Just To Prove Others Wrong
Ages ago, I dated a guy who I knew one of my friends didn’t like. She was always polite to him when we all went out, but I could tell that she had reservations. Then one day, she came to me in private and told me that she was worried about me – that I wasn’t myself when I was with him, and she was concerned that he didn’t have my best interests at heart.
… I was furious at her. How could she doubt my judgment? She didn’t know him like I did! How could she be so RUDE?!
A few months later, when her premonitions came true and he betrayed me, I was devastated. But I was also extremely reluctant to break up with him. Why? Because I didn’t want my friend to have been right about him… How insanely cray cray is that?!
This kind of faulty thinking is actually way more common than you’d think. All too often we stay in jobs / relationships / situations longer than we should, simply to prove our friends / parents / partners wrong… But of course, the truth is, when we do this, the only person we’re hurting is ourselves.
The Buddha said ‘Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.’ The same applies to sticking out a crappy decision just to spite others… So don’t stand for it, beautiful – you deserve so much better than that.
As soon as you know you’re in a situation that’s not aligned with your truth, take swift action to change it. I know it can be tough when it feels like you’re in too deep, or you’ve got too much to lose, but it’s amazing how a few swift choices can turn everything around and make you feel empowered and motivated again. (Not to mention, the longer you wait around and wallow in that crappy feeling of ‘out-of-alignment-ness’, the harder it will be to climb out of your inertia and get your momentum back.)
Look for small shifts and quick wins that you can take action on TODAY. Even if it’s as simple as making one phone call or sending one email, it will restore your sense of self-worth and help you feel like you’re taking charge of your own future.
Forgive Yourself And Move On
In five years, ten years, twenty years’ time, this will all seem like a tiny blip on the radar of your rich, layered, meaningful life. Even though it might feel all-consuming right now, know that this too shall pass. The Universe is sending you an amazing lesson so that you can grow and expand in the exact ways you need to… So soak up that goodness, step into your true power, and stand tall as the goddess you truly are.
So there you have it, beautiful — those are my top tips for reframing ‘being wrong’ and allowing yourself to change your mind.
Does this resonate with you? I’d love to hear your thoughts — What’s your one big takeaway from today’s article? And how are you going to put it into action in your own life? Share with me in the comments below. Remember, thousands of soul-seekers will be reading your words. Your comment might be the ONE THING they need to read to spark serious change deep inside them. So open up, share from your heart, and let’s start a love-fuelled conversation.
As always, you inspire the heck out me. I adore you to the moon and back.