So you made a mistake? Welcome to the club.
Now what are you going to do? Are you going to wallow in self-pity because you weren’t perfect? Spend all your time ruminating about what could have been? Or…
1. Learn from your mistakes.
Your mistakes are great teachers. Without them, you’d never learn. Never get better. Never grow. You’d just always stay the same.
2. You are the person you are today because of your mistakes.
Without everything that you’ve been through in your life — good and bad — you wouldn’t be the person you are today. So, unless you absolutely hate yourself, you can’t regret your mistakes or they wouldn’t have taken you to where you are.
3. You can’t change who you are right now by going backward.
Unless you have a time machine, you can never go back. What’s done is done. If you are feeling particularly down about yourself because of some mistakes you have made, consider the two options that YOU have:
- Dwell on the past and feel bad about your mistakes
- Learn from your mistakes and try to improve on them in the future
The second option will make you significantly happier in the long run.
Mistakes are like our fuel for growth. Making a mistake is less of a something you “do” and more of the Universe pointing out your flaws; You needed to be in the right environment in the first place before faced with a choice, and only after making the poor choice is it clear that you have an area in your life worth improving.
And make sure it’s worth improving.
Don’t dwell over minor “mistakes;” A test score of 98 or selling your house for 0.5% less than the buyer was willing to pay is a minor mistake. Besides, perfectionism is a disease that simply distracts you in the details.
Instead, realize how powerful making mistakes can be. Realize that a situation has been fortunate enough to present itself so you can start improving that area of your life ASAP. Realize that you wouldn’t be able to grow without mistakes. And you wouldn’t be the person you are today without all of your mistakes.