We all have the tendency to avoid that we made a mistake. Because when we make a mistake, either intentionally or not intentionally, we assume that the blamer will get an upper hand. So why do we avoid admitting our mistakes?
On the other hand, the one who knows that you are at fault and do not accept responsibility for it, loses all faith in us. This is something that breaks strings in relationships, Whether in a romantic relationship or work relationship.
Our obvious reaction to someone pointing out our mistake is to get defensive, or to blame someone else or some situation! Some of us do feel guilty for being such a stuck up guy who wouldn’t give in that, yes I did that wrong. But there are others who are so pro at it and usually have forgotten that it’s actually WRONG and breaks relationships by not admitting their mistakes.
And I’ve seen some others who may not admit/confront they are wrong in front of you, but do realize their mistakes and will definitely mend them.
But lets not start blaming or judging others or ourselves immediately. There’s also an experience behind a behavior. Not taking blame can be a result of knowing that the blamer may not take them seriously again or the blamer may not forgive them or understand their situation.
Being in a place of authority also plays certain role. It can be that the head of a company will be less likely to take a blame, more so this person can even shift his misdeed towards his colleagues who are below his position.
As humans, we are instinctively programmed to be in a fight mode as soon as harm alarms our way. So when someone points out our mistake, we instinctively try to avoid it it by shifting it to others or even defending our actions by linking it to a better cause.
Most of us are self-lovers. We cherish ourselves. We create a self-concept since our childhood and think of ourselves as perfect pieces of God’s creation. Hence we have a certain ego that says, “Well, I would never do that!”
I found this perfect example of why we don’t admit to our mistakes, from this website:
When we make mistakes, the gap between our questionable behavior and our sterling self-concept creates cognitive dissonance. We can allay this dissonance either by admitting that we made a mistake and revaluating our self-concept in light of it, or by justifying the behavior as not in conflict with our self-concept after all. Here are some examples:
• You think of yourself as an honest man, but you cheated on your last exam. You can either:
- Admit that cheating is wrong and that maybe you’re not as honest as you thought. Or,
- Justify the cheating by saying that a lot of other students were doing it too, so it really just leveled the playing field.