Mistakes; how can they empower you?
We all make mistakes. Some are easy to recover from and others may be a bit more challenging. Either way; they can be a powerful weapon for our development in ALL aspects of our life.
Mistakes are our secret to becoming an improved version of ourselves. They are secretly the fuel to our engine. But our minds don’t believe that; we are bogged down by a feeling of failure.
I have been personally been very guilty of thinking my mistakes define me. I would beat myself up for mistakes for long after they happened because I believed that:
(A) I’m not good ‘enough’; or
(B) I expect better of myself; or
(C) I wasn’t capable.
This cycle would perpuate and grow; leading me on a pathway where i was negatively affirming my behaviour by either feeling like ‘stupid’ or a ‘failure’.
If we associate making mistakes with the negativity we shift the focus to confirming these ‘negative’ thoughts, rather than the learning on offer.
In fact the reason you made the mistake is because you were either brave or motivated enough to dabble into something new.
“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.”
BUT … How do we do this?
Stage 1: Reframe how we think about mistakes (‘the mind’)
It’s very easy for us to get into a situation where we blame others for a situation or a mistake (once again I have been very guilty of this). Even if it was someone else fault, you put yourself there. Your actions have power, and when you understand that ‘power’ comes with ‘great responsibility’ you
Own it! You made the mistake. It’s time for you to realise that you made it, and its something you can learn from.
3. Applogise / Admit
Their is powership in owning it; and the best way is to applogise for it. Its not that your applogising for being clumsy or your behaviour, but you acknowledge your involvement. It doesn’t matter whose ‘fault’ or if it was only 1% you and the remainder was someone else, you own your participation.
Stage 2: Reframe Our Behaviour (‘the body’)
Introduce Frameworks for Prevention
Cornell University found that we make around 35,000 decisons a day on average. Not everyone decision we make is a ‘mistake’. For most of us, we tend to dwell on the FEW or the minority of decisions that felt ‘wrong’.
Build in process to help yourself prevent making the mistake again. For example, if you know you make typo’s in emails, spell check after or get a third party to proof read.