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The pain that follows when trying to preserve a falsehood is much, much worse than the pain that comes after admitting you made a mistake.

Whenever we refuse to acknowledge the truth, we risk repeating the same mistakes in the future. While we consciously suppress acknowledging the errors in our ways, we unconsciously know that we are lying to ourselves, and this hurts.

Admitting our mistakes, not just to ourselves but also to others, can also bring temporary pain. No one likes being wrong, especially when one is engaged in an intense debate or argument. Some may even mock and ridicule us when they point out our mistakes. This may motivate us to cling to old beliefs and insist that we are still right in order to try to maintain personal integrity. But real integrity comes from recognizing our imperfect knowledge, and moving forward no matter where or how the truth finds us.

If knowledge becomes a game of social power and competition, where we are more concerned with convincing people we are right than actually being right, then we are not on a path to knowledge at all. Admitting our mistakes, especially in a calm and collected fashion, can earn us greater respect in the long-run. It is an attractive quality, and it shows there is more to our individuality than any one narrow pattern of thinking.

Admit your mistakes today.

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