I work professionally in an industry full of smart, driven, and creative people. As such it is also an industry full of strong egos. As with most business, "confidence" is held up as a critical tool to selling one's services or self. 'Clients want to see confidence', as the saying goes. And there is truth to this. No one would hire a mechanic who looked under the hood and seemed unsure what he was looking at.
But confidence is a fine line. Too much of it is likely tied to a rigid mind that is focused on its "rightness". That mind, as the Zen folks say, becomes like a full tea cup with no room for adding anything new. When one becomes fixed in position, sure of oneself to the degree that conversations and actions are more about defending that position than in addressing an issue, you could say that the person has become focused on being right, not the right outcome.
Take renewable energy for example. There are many reasons and benefits to renewable energy. Yet the liberal left feels inclined to convince the conservative right that the earth is heating up and we need to convert to renewables to save the planet. Hire enough scientists and you'll get studies that say this is or is not true. If you focus on being right, you continue to build your evidence, hire more scientists, and shoot down the other sides claims. It becomes a noisy shouting match which is not a bad way to characterize political discourse in America today.
Meanwhile, if you focus on the right outcome - which is to increase the use of renewable energy resources - there are other ways to achieve this. It is far better to position renewable energy as a means to reducing cost or supporting American free-marketing innovation. These are ideas that Conservatives tend to champion. Whether someone buys solar panels to green the earth or save $500 on utilities doesn't matter if the outcome you seek is to have people use more solar power.
Martial training works in a similar manner. In the course of our training, we will be introduced to new ideas, new variations and new ways of seeing things. We may occasionally have known techniques changed or new requirements added where they weren't before. When this happens we have to ask ourselves how we want to focus on the reality of this change. We can debate whether we are right or not. We can argue about the best way to do shihonage or whether the "old way" of doing kumitachi is better than the new.
Or we could focus on outcomes. The outcome is to learn Aikido and to have it effect our lives in a meaningful way. Viewed that way, moving with changes to technique, requirements or expectations becomes a little easier. We remind ourselves what we're in the dojo for and everything falls into place.