“The man who makes no mistakes does not usually make anything”
Edward John Phelps (1822-1900)
We all know that horrible sinking feeling when your stomach clenches, your breathing becomes shallow, the muscles in your neck tighten, your world stops….
YOU got it WRONG!
YOU made a MISTAKE!
YOU are an instant FAILURE!
Hold on for a moment!
The very fact that most of us are walking around today simply means that we are the product of our mistakes. A baby does not learn to walk without first falling down frequently and often!
Each fall is a mistake. Yet society and our learned world view regards mistakes as failures and we have been conditioned to regard a mistake with such shame and horror that nothing short of sack cloth, ashes and immediate self abasement is sufficient to purge our souls, and even then we are obliged to berate ourselves for as long as possible, letting others steal our limelight, our confidence and our worth!
We learn by our mistakes. Many great inventions and advancements in technology are the result of trial and error. Simple things like the light bulb and flight are the result of mistakes being made and the inventors using those mistakes to move forward and solve problems.
The trick is not to make the same mistake more than once and to learn the valuable lesson offered from each mistake. True wisdom is the application of knowledge, and knowledge is assimilated and accumulated through the process of making mistakes!
It is the ability to learn from the mistakes of ourselves and others that enables us to progress in life, love or business.
Now how can we even consider that what went wrong can allow us to progress when we are constantly in fear of judgement of ourselves and others?
Pause for a moment to consider that in the moment, right now, you are just fine, that what ever is happening around you, either of your own making or as a response to others, right now, it is fine.
Be gentle with yourself!
Take a moment to pause, observe and chose your next course of action. In that moment of pause, ask yourself what you can do with what you have to take you to the next stage of your journey through life.
By understanding yourself in the moment, judgement is suspended and your personal clarity of thought and vision comes to the fore to teach and guide us.
Take some time this week to explore to review your life thus far:
- What have been your most magnificent mistakes?
- What are the lessons that you have learned from them?
- What are the recurring misfortunes in your life?