Coping with Mistakes
By: Phelicitus A.
What comes to your mind anytime you encounter such a topic? Generally, a mistake is a decision or an action that we come to regret. The concept of mistake is tied to the larger notion of failure. From a personal perspective I disagree with this, the reality is that mistakes are unavoidable when you are still learning to master the skills you need in order to succeed. It is altogether human, to struggle towards what we’re trying to achieve. And so to refer to this process as failure is very destructive and self defeating.
Mistakes help us grow and develop. Our past mistakes push us to the next level, it may not be where we want to be but it definitely isn’t where we were before. The past mistakes may bring in our lives painful events like loss, struggle, anger and humiliation, making us cautious and afraid to do wrong. The irony is that these events which we try so hard to avoid may be precisely what we need to experience. Without these experiences people would not have the opportunity to discover deeper truths about themselves. Sometimes experiencing pain and struggle can help you understand who you are.
There is abundant opportunity to learn and grow through these painful experiences as they are a fundamental part of our learning process. Mel Schwartz. L. C SW in his articles on “a shift of mind” states that the fear of making such errors keeps us imprisoned in the very narrow comfort zone of the known. Yet it is the movement into the unknown that catalyzes our personal evolution. He adds that if you are excited about new experiences and opportunities for growth then you’ll be less likely to default to the concept of a mistake.
The most essential thing when you make a mistake is taking responsibility for what happened. By accepting it and moving forward rather than beating yourself up over it. Here are a few things we can do to help us cope with the mistakes:
You are not your mistake
First it’s important to remember you are not your mistake. When you make a mistake, have in mind that it doesn’t define who you are as a person. Don’t be too hard on yourself and don’t be judgemental. Everybody makes mistakes.
Own your mistake
Take responsibility for your mistake, own what happened and draw a line under it. Accept you are at fault as this is the first step to help you figure out what to do next. Don’t make excuses for yourself because this will probably just prolong the process.
Recognise your mistake
It has to be clear to you as to what you did wrong. This can help you bury the mistake or put it in the past. Don’t confuse what your mistake was, you can also try talking to those involved so you are completely sure of what not to do next time.
Find a solution and act on it
Most problems have a solution and if you’ve stuffed it up, take time to think about what you could do to improve the situation, things may not be as bad as you initially thought.
Talk it out
Sometimes you may feel that the mistake you made is a huge one and therefore you deserve to carry all that weight alone, you don’t have to. Talk to your mates or family about it. They might just say something sensible making you feel a little better.
In conclusion, it’s human nature to error and if only we could learn from them. Most often we think we have learned from our past mistakes but we don’t because if we did we couldn’t be doing the same mistakes over and over. We only declare our torment and vow to refrain from experiencing it once more. We collect our bad memories and carve them in our minds. And fail to recall the exact emotions we felt. We acknowledge the incident, but rarely the consequences.
We’ve made events in our life bigger causing ourselves a lot of trauma. Let’s enjoy what we go through. If there is one thing we need to learn is how to view life with a different perspective. Embrace your mistakes, they are what makes up life. It’s not that bad after all.