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How Alphas Respond When They Are Wrong
Sometimes we are flat wrong and the things we thought we knew are way off base. Today we’re going to be discussing how to know when you may be wrong and what to do next.
My guest Jimmy Durbin teaches some high-value lessons about why men are so prone to having trouble admitting when they are wrong and outlines the steps he needs to take to grow into that kind of maturity. This is the most valuable message in all of our 61 episodes to date. Whoever you are, this will help you, trust me.
Questions we answer today:
What makes us believe that we are right even though we are headed the wrong direction about something?
What are some indicators that we may be wrong about something?
What would an ALPHA do upon discovering that he is wrong?
How can we approach life with the humility that we may be wrong sometimes?
What about over-apologizing?
Brad Singletary (00:02):
Every day, we make choices. We do our best in every situation everyone does, but sometimes we are flat wrong. And the things we thought we knew are way off base. Today, we’re going to be discussing how to know when you may be wrong and what to do next.
Speaker 2 (00:29):
If you’re a man that controls his own destiny, a man that is always in the pursuit of being better, you are in the right place. You are responsible, you are strong, you are a leader. You are a force for good. Gentlemen, you are the alpha, and this is the alpha quorum.
Brad Singletary (00:53):
Welcome back to the alpha quorum show. Brad Singletary here. I’m with my buddy and colleague Jimmy Durbin. Welcome back, Jimmy.
Jimmy Durbin (00:59):
Thank you very much for having me.
Brad Singletary (01:00):
We introduced Jimmy a few episodes ago. We had him on and shared quite a bit of his personal history, but I just wanted to review some of that. So Jimmy is in long-term recovery from multiple types of addictions and is currently working as a therapist has worked in the substance abuse population and mental health and a father of how many, three boys, three boys, all grown pretty much. They’re men. You’re great grandfather now, right? Yeah. So he’s moving on into a new chapter for himself and appreciate you being here, man.
Jimmy Durbin (01:37):
My pleasure. Thanks for having me back.
Brad Singletary (01:38):
So today we want to be talking about what do we do when we are wrong. Something men find very difficult to do is first admit, maybe to even acknowledge first that we’re wrong, but then to admit it and then to make that wrong, right again. So we’re going to be coming at this from some different approaches. The questions that we want to answer today are what makes us believe that we are right? Even though we’re headed in the wrong direction about something, what are some indicators that we may be wrong in the first place? What would an alpha do upon discovering that he is wrong? How can we approach life with a humility that we may be wrong? And lastly, how do we not overdo apologies? So I want to start first with this question. What makes us believe that we’re right. I think there are so many examples or places in our lives where we may be wrong. So in relationships and parenting work stuff you know, just projects and tasks that we may be doing. So Jimmy, what do you think makes us believe that we are right? Or what makes it so hard to admit that we’re wrong?
Jimmy Durbin (03:00):
Well, as a 52 year old white male, I think I’ve had some environmental surroundings that have told me that I’m right. Cause I’m male because I’m Caucasian. And so I think I learned to be right from parents, siblings, uncles, family members, modeling, watching them, knowing what I saw in my house and then how the story was told to others. So being able to see the difference between what my life experience was and how my parents were telling that story and seeing some variations that even if something’s happening, where it feels wrong, or it doesn’t pass my eyeball test, I’m being shown by my parents that it’s, I at least tell everyone outside that it’s still right. Are things are okay. Does that make sense? Yeah.
Brad Singletary (04:05):
So you weren’t just made to believe that you needed to be right, but that you should appear, right? Like that’s the way to be the way my dad used to say I had my dad on the show a while back and he shared some of his life lessons, but one of the funny things he used to say is I was wrong once it’s when I thought I was wrong, but I was wrong. And I really think he believed that at some point. So we have a need it’s, there’s pride and ego. We have these fragile egos. And I think we all do to some degree or another. And I mean, men, it’s hard for men to even ask for directions. That’s kind of a cliché thing, but what is it about that kind of thing? These simple, simple things asking for directions. You know, I had a problem one time in my life asking to borrow tools. So I needed, let’s say a, a saws, all, you know, a reciprocating saw or something. And I would be so embarrassed to have to ask a family member or a neighbor if they had that, it was like, if I’m a man, I should have all the tools I would ever need or have the money to go out and buy it. And what is, what is with that? What this, why don’t we, why don’t we get embarrassed about maybe I look like fool,
Jimmy Durbin (05:20):
It means I have to be vulnerable. Okay. and that can be a really scary thing. It means that I’m opening myself up to your critique of feedback, harsh criticism. And if I’ve learned as I grew up, or as an individual grows up, that you get critiqued or you get yelled at, or that’s a stupid question then to be vulnerable, becomes a really hard, difficult thing to down the window and say, you know what, I’m lost. Can you give me directions? Cause I’ve done that I’ve driven for hours trying to find a place. And my pride and my ego just would not like I’ll find it, I’ll find it. And you know, there’s a good quality about that too. Right. That perseverance and resilience. And so, yeah.
Brad Singletary (06:15):
Keep trying and work hard, be independent. A lot of that is drilled into us too. And maybe the side effect is this lack of vulnerability.
Jimmy Durbin (06:23):
Yeah. And just continuing to travel down this path and struggle, you know, and I mean, some of it can be, you know, what does it mean for an individual to ask for help, you know, based on what they grew up with and what that means for them and wanting to ask for help or being just admitting that we’re struggling. So I think it’s vulnerability.
Brad Singletary (06:49):
Have you ever, I’m just curious for you, Jimmy, and also for you guys listening to this, have you ever lost respect for someone because they admitted they were wrong because they asked for help, but that they don’t know something or do we gain respect for those people? I think for me, I’ve only respected that more in people. One of my friends who’s on the show and part of this is Taco Mike. He just, he talks about himself. Like he’s an idiot and he’s not, he’s brilliant, but he has no problem in any place in any situation saying, okay, I’m not familiar with that. I’m not, I don’t know that word. I’m not familiar with what you’re talking about, you know, help me out with this. And that just makes me respect people so much more when they can say, I don’t know. There was a time when I taught and I taught graduate school courses.
Brad Singletary (07:44):
These were students in a master’s program. And I thought that I had to, in the beginning, I kind of thought that I had to have every, I had to know everything or I would lose the respect of my students. And early on, someone asks a question and I said, I didn’t know. And one of them later gave me the feedback that, that made them respect me more. And I just thought, you know, I’m the same way I, if someone fakes it and they’re there, they’re there, being there pretending to have it figured out and refusing to accept that they may not have it all figured out. I don’t have a lot of respect for that person.
Jimmy Durbin (08:21):
I was that guy you were Oh yeah, absolutely. Okay. And I did judge and I did, and remember, you know, losing respect for someone. I feel differently today. I, I view it today as that is an act of courage. And I believe that there is a connection between my perspective back then and how I showed up in the world back then. And my inability to ask for help was more of a reflection of some self judgment.
Brad Singletary (09:06):
You were the one judging yourself, not the other people around you.
Jimmy Durbin (09:09):
Yeah. And so, but I was the guy who told you what you wanted to hear. And I would be off the cuff, make it up as I went seat of my pants and I lied. And do you think people saw through that? Yes. I mean, back then, I would have told, you know, like I, you know, I got, I’m a pretty good showmanship. I, you know, I, when I go out and and speak, I always say that I’m adjust guy. So I’m just good looking enough. And I’m just well, educated enough. And I’m just well-spoken enough that I can get over around, through whatever it is. But the truth of it is I was very thin plastic, you know, phony. And, and I do believe that people can see through that. You know, it may take whatever it takes, but I think after a while, you know, you can tell if someone’s just not authentic, it just, that energy is different. And the way they show up in individual’s lives is different.
Brad Singletary (10:14):
It may pass for some people, but people are intuitive enough and they can read the energy and they can know whether or not you’re, this is coming from a genuine place. Or if this is you just kind of faking it until you make it. I read an interesting story recently. Well, actually, I first heard about this from the book leadership and self-deception, which is a great book, but it talks about the story of, I think you pronounce this Ignaz Semmelweis, who was a Hungarian physician in like the 1840s. And he was a, he went into this, this clinic or this hospital, and he was trying to study why so many women were dying from dying during childbirth, the women and the children. They called it child bed fever, I think is what they called it. And some of the women were being delivered by midwives.
Brad Singletary (11:09):
And other groups of women were being delivered by doctors and medical students. And the death rate was about 1% for the midwives and almost 8% from the doctors. So these doctors were surgeons and they were literally going from one surgery to the next, without even washing their hands. And they, the idea was that a good surgeon has blood on his hands. They would be maybe performing an autopsy and then go to deliver a child in the, in the, and the mother and the child dies. And this guy studied all these things and he was looking at, okay, maybe is it, is it because some women deliver the child on their back, some women deliver on their side, you know, what are, what are the elements that make the difference and what he found out and he was hated for and beaten for? I think he was even beaten to death for this was that it was the very hands of the doctor who was trying to, you know, save the life and trying to bring life into the world.
Brad Singletary (12:11):
And he was the one ending the life. And I just think so many times where that doctor, this was ridiculed, he was ridiculed for suggesting that between operations or between medical procedures, that the physicians should wash his hands. And so much of that, I think we have that same kind of pride where we think don’t tell me, don’t, don’t try to suggest anything to me. It’s a refusal to be vulnerable and, and open to new ideas. We’ve talked about our upbringing and how we may not have had the best models of humility. So when we’re looking at a problem, there are usually multiple pieces of a puzzle. And if we’re trying to figure out why something isn’t working and we’ve changed two of the, two of the elements to the problem, and it still doesn’t work, we may not recognize that this is maybe the interaction effect of the two things not working.
Brad Singletary (13:12):
And I guess I’ve done a lot of things with like technology, like web design. And it’s like, I changed this and it’s still not working. So then I changed this one and I thought, surely that would have fixed the problem. Not recognizing that both of those things interacting together, continue to create the problem. Recently I had a situation with my, with my wife. She’s gotten into some gardening and we live here in the desert, by the way, it’s like 115 here today. Hope everybody’s surviving. But so she wanted to put together this greenhouse and she comes home and, or, excuse me, I come home after work and she asked for my help and we’re putting together this thing, it’s kind of like a tent. Think of, think of this, like a, like a, you know, eight foot by eight foot tent or something like that.
Brad Singletary (14:01):
And she had already started on putting these poles together and they were tough to get in. And so I said, Oh, well, maybe this thing, you know, maybe it was made in China. Maybe it’s just the wrong measurements. We just kind of have to force it a little bit. So I’m trying to put these poles in this little sleeve part of the, the greenhouse material and it doesn’t work. And so I got out the cooking oil, literally you’re committed. I was committed. It was, I’m trying to force this thing. And I’m twisting, I’m getting blisters on my hands trying to twist this like aluminum pole through the, through the hole of this greenhouse material. And then I remembered one of my friends was an engineer and he talked about how they were moving a bridge. They were literally like disassembling this bridge and they had to move an entire bridge.
Brad Singletary (14:48):
And the lubricant that they used was Dawn soap. So he, they had this like millions of tons of a road all put together in a bridge and they were trying to slide it across this, this metal thing. And, and, and they use Dawn dish soap. So I said, Oh, Dawn dish soap will work. So I’ve got cooking oil Dawn. So then the, then the dish soap from all the frictions started to get dry and sticky. So they’re not putting water down there. And after like an hour of wrestling with this thing committed to not giving up, I went back to the direction
Jimmy Durbin (15:24):
Other were in directions.
Brad Singletary (15:26):
Yeah. There’s always instructions. Yeah. And in big capital letters, it says, do not attempt to put the pole through the sleeve that we were trying to do. And so I recognized that I was wrong and that as much as I believe that I had the right approach. So then, then it took another hour to kind of undo everything I had done and then magically it worked like a charm. So I had to admit that I was wrong there, we do so many things like that, where we were just committed to finishing.
Jimmy Durbin (15:59):
So for me, that’s a good point of the balance between, you know, your resilience, your commitment, wanting to complete, and being able to ask for help or realize, is there a marker? What indicator do I have that this isn’t going correctly and finding the balance between that. So for me, this is a three, three stage process. Okay. So am I, or do I have self-reflection do I have an internal process where I can review, right. So in this story, at some point you stopped and said, okay, let me let me course correct. This is, I’m having some challenges, some struggles, this isn’t going as easily as I would normally think, right?
Brad Singletary (16:54):
Yeah. Maybe it’s not this material. Maybe it’s not the stupid poll. Maybe it’s not the cooking oil, maybe it’s me operator error. Right.
Jimmy Durbin (17:02):
And so that’s a process that you would have, or an individual would have to say, okay, not going as expected. I need to stop. So you stopped ask for help, which is in the form of those direct directions, get counsel, get some knowledge and then course correct. And that second part is, you know, being able to admit that I’m wrong. So we have a process where we can be introspective review and then go into a, okay, I need to admit that I was wrong. Of course. Correct. And then admitting that is probably that third step of what to do. Yeah.
Brad Singletary (17:50):
Back to the instructions. See if you see, if you miss something, you ask about indicators of how we may know when we’re wrong. One is one that I see, like in the, in the counseling and coaching world is feedback. If every boss you’ve ever worked with has told you the same thing, there, there might be some truth to that. You know, you’re on your third marriage and this woman complains about the same things that the last one did. Maybe there’s some truth in that maybe it’s worth taking a look at that, honestly, frustration. So me trying to jam this pole in the wrong hole, it’s frustrating. It doesn’t, it doesn’t make sense. I’m like, how could they be? How could they have been so wrong this factory with, with these engineers and people putting this stuff together and typing up the directions, how could they be so wrong? It was me so frustration. It doesn’t look right. It doesn’t feel right.
Jimmy Durbin (18:41):
Colin cowherd does a radio show, a sports ESPN. Yeah. So he, he calls that the eyeball test. Okay. He very simply says, you know, if I look over the environment, if something looks out of place, that’s a pretty good indicator. Like to trust my voice, to trust myself. Does it pass the eyeball test? Does it make sense? You know, at some point, if you’re having to jam this pole, that’s not passing, then I will like stop. Right? And then no, no, no. I’m not going to stop. Let me, let me get some grease. Okay. Brad stop. No, no, no. I know I need dish soap. Like what’s going on with you?
Jimmy Durbin (19:25):
Where’s the indicator. Like, where’s the marker to say, Hey, you know, stop like that. That’s what I’m talking about with that inner pure, that perspective and that indicator of like, and I’ve done it. How many times do I need to bang my head up against the wall before I’m actually going to stop? Or do I really need to get bloody? It used to be that I use I’d have to get bloody. I’d have to tear it up. And if I’m honest, it wasn’t that long ago I had a truck and unlike taco Mike, I’m not very mechanical. I know where the key goes. And the gas is the right foot pedal. And the engine indicator light came on and I thought, okay, well, I’ll, I’ll take care of that and got busy and didn’t and broke down on the highway. Cause the truck overheated and I lost the engine. So that was a $7,000 mistake, $7,000 delay. So I listened to those controls now, cause they’re actually there to tell me things, but you know, I know better. It’s not that big a deal or it’s, can’t be, you know, I’m gonna tear it up. You know, I’m going to put grease and shit shoved this thing down in there.
Brad Singletary (20:43):
Yeah. So the, I liked the idea of reading the gauges. I think that’s something that men can relate to read the gauges that may be frustration, anger, anxiety. If you’ve had repeated failures, you, you keep ending up with the same results. That that may be an indication that you’re wrong. If you continue to see others as the problem, if everyone around you, if everything around you, it’s the other political party. It’s the neighbor’s fault. It’s the, it’s the wives fault. The kid’s fault. It’s your parents’ fault. If, if you can come up with ways of blaming everyone around you, it could be possible that you’re just refusing to see your own responsibility. You’re just resistant to accepting your own contribution to the things you say.
Jimmy Durbin (21:29):
Yeah. In the addiction arena, we often say, we’ll just do a geographical, just move, just move. You know? And the response is always that as well, wherever you go, there you are, right. Like I used to have a mantra of, if I’m not the problem, there is no solution. I love that. I’ve been teaching that to people. If I’m not the problem, there is no solution that comes from taking ownership, realizing that there is a lot of power and being empowered. If I say, okay, if, if I am the problem, then what can be my solution? Because I spent years making everyone and everything else, the problem, because denial, pride my addiction, like whatever the case was, but when I’m in that space. And so I appreciate what you say about that because I think there’s a lot of validity too. If it’s always someone else, chances are, you know, to take a look in the mirror and, and get vulnerable. Right. And just admit, and then course correct. I think,
Brad Singletary (22:41):
I think the temptation to put the blame on other people is that it absolves us of any responsibility. That’s the, that’s just the easy way. And although, like in terms of like addiction, so many addicts have been traumatized, they’ve been bad. Shit has come to them from the hands of other people, parents, spouses, all kinds of, you know, wrongs have happened to them. And what I don’t hear in any of the healing that happens is for people to make a list of all the people that have wronged them. Maybe there’s some PR maybe some trauma needs to be processed in that way. But I know that’s not a part of the 12 step model. Yeah. Make a list of everybody. Who’s had been a jerk to you and been mean to you and who’s treated you unkindly. The healing comes from looking in the mirror. Brother, look at yourself, take accountability for the ways that you have been wrong. It’s, it’s fascinating to me. If you look at those 12 steps, how many of those have to do with your wrongs? Really? All of it is about hump. Isn’t it? Yeah. Taking ownership.
Jimmy Durbin (23:46):
It’s a process. I agree with you in that whatever label you want on the vehicle, addiction, overeating, eating disorders, personality, behavior, shopping. If you let that vehicle get you from a, to B to a level of admitting and awareness and taking responsibility, then change can happen. But until then, you know, if it, if it is always the, the other drivers around the road, if it is always the spouse or the kids or the school or the teachers or the government, then there isn’t any level of accountability to do some self processing to say, okay, where do I, where am I on this? Do I need to take any level of responsibility or am I wrong? And then of course, correct.
Brad Singletary (24:42):
Yeah. Wisdom is knowing the difference between what I can control and what I can. And if I’m the problem I can control that
Jimmy Durbin (24:49):
Time experience helps with understanding.
Brad Singletary (24:55):
I read this quote recently and it’s so profoundly kind of deep. I need your help with it here, Jimmy. But this is by Chris Jamie. And it says pride is pride. Not because it hates being wrong, but because it loves being wrong to hate being wrong is to change your opinion when you are proven wrong. Whereas pride, even when proven wrong decides to go on being wrong. That is just so powerful. So we think that we don’t want to be wrong. That’s the fear. It’s just, it’s kind of the irony of control. It’s the irony of, of right versus wrong. Because if we, if we, if we, if we stay stuck in our, in this prideful place, we just continue going on, being wrong
Jimmy Durbin (25:39):
To hate being wrong means that you’ll change your opinion when you are proven wrong. So if I don’t like something, if I don’t like missing three froze, or if I don’t like fill in the blank and I do, then I will do something in order to not have that reoccur again. So the change process, but if I’m in my pride in my ego and this one hits home for me, because as I’ve done my own work and kind of worked through and all the processing and education, all the messes that I make on the surface of the earth, I can usually funnel into three buckets. So I have a need to be right. I’m very entitled and I’m dishonest and it’s different forms. So for me, when you read that quote, I have, because I have such a strong desire to be right. And there are times that I would rather be right than be happy.
Jimmy Durbin (26:44):
And that shows up quite a bit, usually in my family relationships. And it happened this weekend, my dog threw up on the couch and the carpet floor. So I grabbed a rag and I was cleaning it on the floor. And she’s like, Oh, we threw up on the couch as well. Just, can you give me that rag? And the way I wanted to solve that problem was just take the fabric off the cushions and wash them. And I wanted to be right about that. And she wasn’t asking me to solve it or to even do anything other than just hand her the rag. But I was engaged in this. Well, no, it’s not that hard. Right. You just take the cushions off and then you can wash them and it’ll be done. And, and about halfway through, because I could see this look hurt on her face. I said, you know what? Just forget it. Just forget it. Forget I even said anything. So now I’m butt hurt. And so now she even feels like worse that she’s even bothered me and she hadn’t even done anything.
Jimmy Durbin (27:53):
And I stayed angry and sat back on the couch and was like, gosh, dang it. You know, I was wrong. I didn’t need to show up that way. She wasn’t asking me to solve anything to do anything, but I wanted to drive my point home. I wanted to be right about this. And so subsequently that night, I, you know, listen, I, I need to apologize. Like you, weren’t asking me to do anything other than give you the rag. And I was trying to drive my point and show you that I was right and get validation and ended up hurting you. And that’s just not the husband that I want to be. So I, you know, I’m sorry. And that cleared up the energy, but 24 hours,
Brad Singletary (28:37):
You know, what’s interesting in that is that you were trying to, you were trying to fix it. You were trying to be responsible. You were trying to be thorough. You were trying to be nice. You know, I find a lot of, a lot of men who have this, this kind of problem, including myself, we’re people pleasers. And so if we ever think someone brings something to us where we’ve done wrong, or we’ve not handled something in the right way, our need to be right in our need to please other people. And that makes us refuse to allow ourselves to be wrong. Does that make sense? The nice guy syndrome kind of thing, where we, we, we w you’re just so nice. It sounds like you’re trying to really take care of it and be a thorough you’re trying to clean up the dog’s mess. This is kind of, you know, your dog and you’re trying to do the right thing, but it, but it led to a problem because you were almost just overly concerned, overly feeling overly responsible.
Jimmy Durbin (29:33):
Yeah. And so thank you for validating me and you know, there, the other side of this is those individuals who apologize too often are chronically yes. Or habitually either because of the way they grew up and that just, they were made to, or, you know, when I was talking about my wife about coming on tonight, she’s like, I sometimes apologize too much or apologize for something that I didn’t do. She said that, or you said, she said that to me because it makes me feel better. And that’s certainly not been my experience, but that there are those, and that has validity of being saying, I’m sorry, apologizing for maybe even something that you didn’t do just to people please, or be the peacekeeper, if that’s your role. And I think that can be just as detrimental.
Brad Singletary (30:30):
Sure. Definitely overdone by so many people apologize when there is no fault of their own or apologize when it’s inappropriate to do that, or feeling responsible for something that isn’t really necessary
Jimmy Durbin (30:47):
Different way to go about it. Right. Because that can oftentimes be connected to self-worth where I think where I come from more, some narcissistic traits of just need to be right. And that resilience kind of, that we talked about and perseverance, and just, I’m going to put this pole on the whole it takes a different process or perspective in order to get to that place of, you know, admitting I’m wrong. We’re on the other side of the spectrum over apologizing takes work in self-efficacy, self-love realizing that your voice matters and that if you didn’t do anything, it’s, you don’t need to apologize. Like you’re okay. The way you are and finding your voice and, and, and standing on solid ground to know that it’s okay, that you don’t need to apologize. Like you didn’t do anything wrong. But if, again, both environmental situations, right. If, if you grew up one way or the other, it may be symptomatic of, of your childhood upbringing.
Brad Singletary (31:55):
So do you think there’s some narcissism in the people who over apologize as well? Like I say, I have a stomach ache and you say, Oh, I’m so sorry. Like, you’re the cause of my stomach ache. Yeah. That’s what I mean. That made me question yourself accidentally. You’re not, you know, you’re just feeling responsible for things that you’re not,
Jimmy Durbin (32:13):
That’s a good question. I know, as I’ve talked to different individuals about that, there’s a level of empathy. And I think for women, it can be different where there they are, sorry for that. You’re going through pain. You know, if Brad, you, as my friend were going through some difficult times or hard times, and you were sharing that with me. And I said, Oh man, I’m like, it’s not that I’m apologizing and I’m just trying to connect with you. Right. but I think as long as it’s a conscious decision and you’re an individual knows what they’re doing and how they’re connecting to that versus I think what we’re talking about is probably a little different arena.
Brad Singletary (32:57):
Interesting too. I read an article in psychology today about kind of the male female differences. And the author was making a, an interesting observation that the problem with men needing to be right is usually often is often coming from, from women. And, and they said, men don’t pick on other men for their need to be right. Much like women don’t pick on other women for being overly emotional. That’s good. You know, so there’s some interesting gender dynamics with that too. Let’s go on to our next question here, which you started on a little bit there, but what, what does an alpha do upon discovering that he is wrong? This building that I I’m working in here, beautiful building here in the, in the Henderson area of Las Vegas. And there are two identical buildings behind my office building. These are probably like multimillion dollar investments, beautiful colonial looking buildings.
Brad Singletary (33:53):
And the two buildings behind me, I think these are probably 10 or 15 years old. They never opened. So they’re, the windows are boarded up. It’s just, these are abandoned brand new buildings because as far as I understand the foundation was, was wrong. And so, because the foundation wasn’t poured properly, it’s it wasn’t saved in past inspections or whatever. No, one’s really willing to go in and put the money in to fix that. And it can’t be occupied. It makes me also think of a religious structure. My parents 56 years ago drove from Florida to salt Lake city, Utah, to be married in the salt Lake LDS temple. An interesting thing about the history of that building is that it took 40 years to build, but after nine years of building that, so Brigham young, who was the leader of the church at that time, there’s this, this, this movie that depicts the story of him sitting in this basement.
Brad Singletary (34:56):
They basically it’s taken them nine years and they finished the basement of it, but the foundation is cracked and he sits there and he says, you know, I’m going to, I’m going to just sit in this spot until I know what to do. And I think he sits there all night. It shows the sun coming up the next morning and he says, I know what we’re going to do. We’re going to dig it up. We’re going to start over. So what is it that the alpha does when he recognizes that he’s wrong? What do you do when you see that you’ve gone about things the wrong way? How do you, how do you fix it? I read a quote here from Marvin Williams who said is no better test of a man’s integrity than his behavior when he is wrong. So we’ve talked already about the acknowledgement that maybe I’m wrong, but then maybe we have to, we got to do some research.
Brad Singletary (35:54):
I often ask men when they have a particular problem, if they’ve ever Googled it. And they kind of look at me, have you ever Googled it? Have you ever checked out any YouTube videos on that? There was a funny thing a couple of Thanksgivings ago where we were making deviled eggs and I kept getting sick and tired of the, of the eggs, sticking to the, you know, you boil them too long or you don’t do it. Right. And you can’t peel the eggs. And I was determined that there’s a right way to do that and I was doing it wrong. And so I Googled it and my brother-in-law taught me this probably 10 years ago or so you can just Google anything, Google it. How do I, what’s the proper way to boil eggs so that they’re easy to peel. So you acknowledge that you may be doing something wrong.
Brad Singletary (36:42):
And then I think you do some research. Have you asked anyone else, have you, do you have a mentor? Do you have a tribe of men that you can go and tell on yourself too? You ever talked to a professional ever taken a course? You know, it takes maybe sometimes digging up the building and starting over. It takes disassembling the little greenhouse taken out the pole that you put in the wrong hole and starting over, going back to the instructions, we’ve got to admit it. What is the value? And just admitting it, like you’ve done a lot of work on yourself. You you’ve, you’ve seen lots of people through recovery and sobriety and now working in the mental health world. And what is the power, especially for men to admit when they’re wrong.
Jimmy Durbin (37:33):
Awareness is key. Okay. Admitting it means that there’s some level of awareness and then can change, can happen. You know, I’m reminded before I got into mental health and therapy was in the casino industry and convention sales and city center, which consisted of Aria Bedarra Mandarin crystals, and then a Harmon project. And I think they broke ground in 2006. And then it was in 2014 that the city finally deemed that Harmon project in uninhabitable, uninhabitable. Thank you. Never wanted to admit it. You know, you think of the process that a site has to go through in order to, and I’m sure someone knew and they were trying to cut corners or Hey, will X, Y, or Z. And so that part of Las Vegas Boulevard still hasn’t been developed. And when I was working back at MGM, they had, there were some talks of, well, we’ll just implode it.
Jimmy Durbin (38:55):
But they still haven’t done it again. I’m not a construction expert, but I think it would the damage to try to do that. It just seems insurmountable to me. So it just sits there vacant. So admitting that you’re wrong means that change can happen. There’s this awareness you know, in substance abuse that the 10 step alcoholics anonymous in the literature, they talk about, you know continue to take a personal inventory and when we are wrong, promptly admitted. And I think that’s a great blueprint for exactly what we’re talking about. Do you have, or what is your personal inventory? How do you review your day, your week? How do you review what interactions you had? We do it in business all the time, and we’re not attached re most of the time emotionally. Right. But it seems like when we go inward, we might be dealing with shame, a lot of emotions that stop us from taking inventory.
Jimmy Durbin (40:05):
But I think that’s a really healthy process for any business and for any individual to take a personal inventory, describe that for people not familiar with that language personal inventory. Yeah. So, I mean, we’ve kind of touched on it tonight. The, our ego, our pride in the AA literature, they talk about character defects. As therapists, we would probably say character traits, right? Not to put a negative or positive on it. But what drives us? You know, what, what beliefs do we have that propel our perspective that leads us to action. And do we have a way of understanding what that is? Those, those character traits, what is your pride? How do I show up? What kind of feedback? Like all the things that we’ve been talking about and what am I doing with that information? And again, if we do it in business and it’s essential, I would say in business, you want the data, you want the numbers taking it.
Jimmy Durbin (41:13):
How’s, it’s projected. How’s this gonna look? What’s my inventory. What’s good. What’s bad. What spoiled, what what’s taken up floor space, what needs to be removed? What’s a defective product. I need to get it back to get my refund or whatever that case may be like. You’re not going to succeed in business if you don’t have an inventory process. So it’s no different than that. We do it in our homes. I gotta go to the grocery store, let me take an inventory. Now I’m not attached. If I don’t have milk or I’m not attached. If the sour cream has gone bad or the cheese has mold on it. But again, when we do that, when we go on this fact finding fact searching mission internally, sometimes we get caught up in the spiderweb of the emotions and that’s where the alpha quorum, a good drinking buddy, a therapist, a parent, your best mate, can assist and help with that process. Like I’ve always say it’s really helpful to me to have a space in my life where I can be completely transparent and I can tattle on myself.
Brad Singletary (42:23):
I love that. When you talk about tattling on yourself, the, the men in my groups who seem to do the best are the ones that say exactly what they’re doing. And sometimes they get, sometimes they get, I mean, sometimes the other men will swear at them and say, what is your freaking problem? And they get a lot of kind of harsh feedback, you know, punch in the mouth. But those are the guys who are really reaching and they’re doing that inventory. And they’re using the voices of other men that they trust to, to help them get there. It’s interesting. When you talk about like, this was the 10th step you were talking about. So this is like, after the person has really made amends for major things in their life, they’ve kind of gone around and to take an accountability and, you know, done their apologies and done all the things that they, they need to make these major things, right. But this is how you stay. This is how you stay in a good place, is to continue to do that. And when we’re wrong promptly admit it. I love that. I love that little part promptly admitted,
Jimmy Durbin (43:22):
Great word. And, and yes, to your point. So we often refer to steps 10, 11, and 12 is the maintenance or the growth steps. Like these are the steps to help us. And again, no different than a business, stay healthy, stay profitable. And so continue to take a personal inventory and when we’re wrong, right? So that’s the second part of this is being able to admit I’m wrong. I think the more work I do on myself, the more work that I do with others, especially for men, when we can admit what our limitations are, it’s really healthy. If we can admit what our boundaries are, where our weak spots are, where the blind spots reside in our life, that’s healthy. And we don’t teach that society. Certainly doesn’t teach that. Oftentimes women will say they want the man on the white horse, you know? But there’s a level of vulnerability that comes from a man who can admit his limitations and be okay with that and subsequently asked for help. So to, to admit that we’re wrong, there’s a song entitled. I’m wrong. I’m sorry. I love you.
Brad Singletary (44:53):
Sing it for us Jimmy. I’d love to
Jimmy Durbin (44:56):
Not. But that’s, those are the lyrics, you know, and I think it’s powerful. I think it’s more often more powerful or let me speak for myself in my experience, it has been more powerful for me, oftentimes in my marriage or my very close relationships for me to say, you know what? I was wrong more so than to say, I love you. You know? And I’m okay. Today was saying I was wrong. I was flat out wrong and I hurt you. And I’m sorry. And I love you. And a man who can do that, I think is a man who’s done his work. Who’s self-confident who knows where he’s going and can be the father, the son, the friend that he’s always wanted to be in his life. And that’s a man who’s done a lot of work. And
Brad Singletary (45:55):
What about people who say, you know, Oh, apologize. And doesn’t change anything. You know, talk is cheap. Those are just words that doesn’t fix anything. It does no good to apologize. Do you believe in that? No, I don’t either. I I’m a person who appreciates apologies. And for me, it’s like, I just want to know that you understand that you hurt me. I can, I can forgive almost anything. I just want to know that you understand what, what happened here and how you affected me. Do you understand the cause and effect of, of, of your behavior? And I have to remember that for myself too.
Jimmy Durbin (46:30):
I mean, we’re human beings, we’re wired for connection. All of us have an essential desire to be seen, to be heard and to be known. And someone admitting that they’re wrong or I’ve hurt. You brings that person into existence. What a powerful, powerful way to, to connect. And if our society says anything, we’re quick to forgive. We’re quick. Like, it doesn’t matter what sports sport athlete, what politician, what leader holds onto a lie, denies, denies, denies, and then, you know what, okay, I did it. I’m sorry. And we forgive them like, okay, that’s all, that’s all I needed from you. That’s all I wanted. That’s all. Thank you. And now we can move on, but if that’s not there, which is why, and I’m glad you picked up on that because that word promptly admitted is key. And that is in and of itself its own process.
Jimmy Durbin (47:34):
So rather than react the way that I did with the cleaning up the, the throat with my dog, you know, it took me six hours to stop and go back and apologize. And I’m okay with that. It used to be days, weeks that I would just get upset and I’d transfer my energy onto people, places and things. And I didn’t have to do it, you know? And so what I tell myself, because I also believe in this process, it’s, it’s progress, not perfection progress, not perfection. So for me, it’s okay. Next time that happens, Jimmy just make it five hours, four hours. Like just constantly just take that inventory. Know what your markers are, what the indicators are and just work to get better. I’m not, I’m not going to be perfect at it. It’s okay. But I think oftentimes society teaches men that we need to vote our feelings off the Island and society teaches women to vote their bodies off the Island. And so men, we don’t talk about our feelings, women. We just don’t talk about our bodies and it’s just unhealthy. And it causes a lot of problems.
Brad Singletary (48:48):
It’s interesting. When you talk about the power of an apology in like relationships, when a person is digging their heels in what is likely the, you know, refusing to apologize, refusing, to acknowledge and validate the other person’s experience and how they’ve been hurt by you, what is their likely, what is their likely response? Cause I think that, I think the whole, I was wrong. I’m sorry. I love you. That’s that whole message. That’s disarming to the other person. If you put up, if you put up the barriers, if you put up the wall, put, put up the Gates and the, and the guard rails, and you put everything up to defend yourself, it just the, to every action, there’s an equal and opposite reaction. The more defensive we are, the more the other person attacks and so acknowledging wrong. And just saying those words, one thing that it does is it disarms the other person and now they don’t have in sales.
Brad Singletary (49:47):
They kind of talk, I learned this in a social psychology class. It’s the kind of thing that made me interested in this whole field was if you’re, let’s say you’re trying to sell a car and you know, that one of the things that might be you know, not be the best feature of this thing, you’re trying to sell, go ahead and tell it to them, to give them their own argument. And it’s not to manipulate is to validate, yeah, this one, isn’t the best on gas mileage, but it really has a high towing capacity or whatever it may be. And so you can take away the other person’s argument by just acknowledging how you’re wrong and sometimes admitting when you’re wrong means admitting that they’re right. Maybe it’s maybe we add a fourth line to the lyric. I was wrong. You’re right. I’m sorry. I love Jimmy we’ve this has been a great talk today, man. I appreciate the things you bring to this. Not just, you’re a smooth and sexy voice, but your actual wisdom and the ways that you’ve matured and the way you’re sharing that with men here. Final thoughts on how to admit when you’re wrong, stop trying to put it in the wrong hole.
Jimmy Durbin (50:57):
I love your story. You know, I think just as a recap, because your story just, it’s a full circle. What indicators do I have in my life? You know, read the directions, instructions, get feedback, have a place that you can take your personal inventory. Be honest with yourself, tattle, be just transparent with no shame, no judgment, admit that we’re wrong. And if you’re not there, that’s okay. You know, if you’re on some varying degree of that, that that’s okay too. Like just wherever you’re at, that’s just, that’s a marker. That’s just where you’re at. And if you want to improve, then, you know, do what you feel like you need to do within your circle of filaments to improve and you know, admit to yourself and to others. And it’s OK. Like if there’s one message, it’s okay to be wrong, you know, it, it doesn’t mean anything more than that. Then you’re willing to look at yourself to take ownership and be different. And that’s a very powerful thing, a very healthy thing. And I think we need, especially as men to teach more men, our children be mentors for, you know, a younger generation to, to, to be different, you know, to have that type of change, to create that kind of connection.
Brad Singletary (52:29):
That’s great. We’ve got a model that sometimes the what I find in like the counseling setting that people often need is just the language. And so that’s why engaging with a tribe, having a mentor, a coach, talk to your pastor, whoever it may be, your parents. Sometimes they can just give you the language. I don’t know how to admit when I’m wrong. I don’t know how to say, I’m sorry. I don’t know how, what is a good apology. You can get help with how to do that. So if any of the things that we’ve talked about today are problems for you. Reach out to us, Google it do whatever you have to do to alpha up. That’s kind of one of our little slogans here. And that means that you can acknowledge the ways that you need to be different and you do whatever it takes to improve yourself until next time, brothers, Alpha Up.
Brad Singletary (53:18):
Hey, thanks for listening to another episode of the alpha corm show. We believe that men change their lives by engaging with a tribe to improve their actions, attitudes, and attributes. You can check out the show notes on our website at alphaquorum.com. Follow us on Instagram and Facebook. And please leave us a rating and review wherever you listen to our show, Hey, this is a podcast not therapy. So even though we may feature professionals on the show, this is not intended as therapeutic advice. If you need someone to talk to please reach out to us and we can get you pointed in the right direction until next time, gentlemen.
Speaker 3 (53:59):
Gentlemen, you are the alpha and this is the alpha quorum.