When does the need to be right become an addiction?
(CBS News) You may not want to admit this about yourself, but many people are addicted to being right. It can be seen as an off-putting character trait, but the good news is you can retrain your brain to be rid of the compulsion.
Judith Glaser, the CEO and founder of Benchmark Communications and author of the new book "Conversational Intelligence," explained that similar to other addictions, being hooked on needing to be right is based on a chemical response in our brains.
"It makes us feel good, and we want to do it more. If we don't feel good, we want to do it less, and with addictions we keep getting reinforced," said Glaser, who is also a workplace and productivity expert. "It's all chemical. If we look inside the brain, we get to see what's happening, and adrenaline and dopamine's something we crave. But most people don't realize this is what's going on in their head."
Having this type of need or addiction can cause a lot of trouble in the workplace as it can influence how people work with peers, respond to bosses, or, especially for those in a managerial role, how they treat their employees.
"The more you turn on your rightness, the more we turn off. The more I'm feeling afraid to speak up to you, which is what happens when the person keeps being right and you are wrong, the more I go into my feared state," Glaser said.
Watch: A cure for addiction?
Because the addition to being right is a learned trait and can be untrained, many people, once they recognize the problem, even resort to hiring a coach to help cope with situations.
For Judith Glaser's full interview, watch the video in the player above.
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