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How to Be Okay With Making Mistakes and Why They’re So Important

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I ran my first workshop to two friends in their living room. It was pretty bad. I apologized throughout: “I’m sorry this is so bad!” My hands shook, and I fumbled my words. But a year later, when I’d run a series of successful workshops, I was glad I decided to do that first workshop from my friend’s couch. I was grateful I’d taken the risk, and given it a go because I pushed through the awkward stage in order to get to the good part.

I had similar learning experience while testing my accountability program. I didn’t get a response from one of my testers, so I assumed she had left the program. I thought nothing of it, but then received a message from her: “I thought the program was good. But when I didn’t send in my weekly report and you didn’t check in with me or follow up… I gave up.”

I was mortified. My accountability program was designed to support people each week and I had neglected to do the one thing I promised to do! But here’s what I learned: mistakes are part of it. Mistakes are a rite of passage for anything worthwhile. We have to learn for ourselves what works as it’s an important part of the journey.

Know that you will trip up and make mistakes but it is up to you if you get back up again. There is no “mistake-free” route. Life is about taking action, learning, and re-plotting.

So for anyone starting a new business or something similar, here are four things to keep in mind:

1. Don’t be afraid to let mistakes happen

Let them happen, they will crop up. There is no perfect route! We can’t learn without stumbling (a little). I see the following taglines in many business start-up webinars: “Let me share my mistakes, so you don’t make any!” It’s great to learn from people who are further ahead, but we need to make mistakes.

We have to go through our own learning, to discover what works for us. So learn from the experts or the people who are further ahead but don’t mistake this for “never doing anything wrong”.

If you’re starting something exciting, and hoping to never make a mistake, you’ll have a shock when the inevitable occurs. Instead, be open to it. What mistakes will I make? What will I learn from them? How can I grow from them?

2. Appreciate the risk you’re taking

Not everyone pursues their goal or dream. Not everyone risks new experiences. Whether it’s a new hobby or attending an event on your own, know that there are people who won’t put themselves through it. They’re too scared, and they will make excuses.

My point is to acknowledge the risk you’re taking with your new venture. The courage and strength it takes to push yourself, and keep going is tough so give yourself credit. Know that for every mistake you make, there are ten people out there who don’t have the guts to do what you’re doing. Give yourself a pat on the back. Forget about “winning” and focus on doing.

Don’t think, just do.” – Horace

3. Know that everyone goes through making mistakes

Every single person who created something amazing (a wonderful relationship; a close and loving family; a thriving business) made mistakes along the way. They messed up, they did things wrong and they allowed themselves to learn in order to come out stronger.

Think about anyone you admire: Beyonce; a New York symphony orchestra player; an Olympic snowboarder… do you think they made mistakes along the way? Did they fall down, and get back up again? Of course they did.

Because everything worthwhile involves risk. The people you see at the top of their game have all made mistakes. So take a page from their book and make mistakes now. Make them quickly, improve, and move on. You’ll soon be someone other people are asking how you got to be where you are now.

4. Ignore the judgers

There will always be people who look at what you do, without knowing much (if anything) about your situation, and comment or pass judgment. The funny thing is that most of them do it from the sidelines; they don’t get involved in the game themselves.

In my twenties, I changed jobs a lot. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, so I tested different careers. This experience was vital to learn what worked for me. I grew from it, and it set me on the path I’m on today.

During this time, my great-aunt commented on my job-hopping. She was concerned about it, and shared that with me many times. And yet, she hadn’t worked outside of the home for 40 years.

“My mom always said that there would be haters. Not everyone can love ya.” – Joel Madden

You might wonder how someone can make groundless comments like that but people do. Childless friends who comment on your parenting style. Family members who question your decision to travel the world, when they don’t own a passport. Colleagues who tell you your business venture won’t work, when they don’t have the courage to leave the company they work for.

So what should we do? Ignore them. Let them do their thing, and you do yours, because anyone can criticize. It’s infinitely more difficult to build and accomplish. The question is: what do you want to accomplish and are you willing to risk making mistakes to get there?

What type of business do you want to build? Let us know below!

Image courtesy of Twenty20.com

Claire O'Connor is an accountability coach and writer. She works with people who need motivation and structure or who feel lost and stuck. Through her accountability program, she helps people prioritize their tasks and make progress. She is a lifelong learner/mistake-maker. She can be found at www.thefivepercent.net or at https://www.facebook.com/thefivepercent.net/.

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A Simple but Effective Technique to Be More Confident

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Many people want to learn how to be confident in different situations, but it’s not always easy. Maybe we’re too addicted to comparing ourselves or maybe social media has brainwashed us to believe that we should all be rich, famous, and in incredible shape. (more…)

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Knowing Your Message vs Delivering Your Message

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Have you ever sent a text message only to have it misinterpreted by the person reading it? Happens all the time. Have you ever given a presentation that you were totally prepared for only to have it fall flat? Happens all the time. Have you ever had someone ask you something like, “Why are you mad?” when you were not at all mad? Happens all the time. (more…)

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The 3 Most Important Things I Learned About Personal Growth

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When you look back on your life, what do you want to think about? Do you plan to reminisce on all of the good things that have happened and how they shaped who you are today? Or would you rather remember all of the bad decisions, challenging experiences, and mistakes made that hurt or wasted a portion of your life?

In my opinion, I think it is important to reflect on both. While it’s important to remember the hardships we’ve been through in our lives – without them we wouldn’t be where we are now. There are 3 very specific areas that I feel have helped me grow in a personal sense more than anything else in my life so far. 

These aren’t simple lessons in a book or a lecture that you can just absorb and apply to your life. These are things that I’ve learned through experience and reflection, and I’m still learning and growing today.

1. We determine how much we’re worth by what we think about ourselves, others, and life in general.

This might seem like a pretty obvious lesson in life but it’s actually one of the most important because we can determine our own worth by how we think about ourselves and the world around us. If you’re looking for success in any kind of business or social setting (dating), then I’ll tell you right now that it doesn’t matter if you have 10 billion dollars or not – people are still going to judge you based on your thoughts and beliefs alone.

What determines our value isn’t necessarily what we do with our lives (which is often based on luck) but whether or not we believe that ‘our work’ is worthy or not in some sort of grand scheme or universe. We may not always be able to control what happens in our lives, but we can always control how we value ourselves and others.

“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” – Maya Angelou

2. You don’t have to change your habits or personality just because someone else doesn’t like it – their opinions are THEIRS alone.

This is another one of those lessons that people tend to pick up on a little bit late in life, but if anything that makes its importance even worse! Basically, there’s going to come a time when you’re going to meet someone who has certain expectations of you as a person…but these expectations might not be realistic due to their motivations and personal beliefs. For example, sometimes parents might expect you to be a lawyer or doctor because that’s what they believe is best for their child.

However, this isn’t the case for everyone and so maybe your passion lies in music or writing novels. In this example, if you were also pressured into becoming a doctor – then there would obviously be some kind of conflict going on within yourself as a person. You should never have to give up something that you want to do just because someone else doesn’t like it! The reason why we’re put onto this Earth is to make our own choices and go after our OWN dreams instead of letting others determine what we can and cannot do with our lives .

3. You can’t change your life until you accept that you need to make a change.

When I was younger, I thought that this lesson would be pretty obvious – but as I got older, it really made me appreciate the fact that there are always different ways of perceiving our lives. For example, if someone wants to become rich and famous one day – their mind might simply overshadow any other possibility in their head because they feel like this is what they NEED to do right now.

However, this isn’t always true within our own lives because we think about things too literally instead of having an open mind. If you want to achieve success in any kind of business or social setting (dating) then you should be willing to try out different things instead of staying in your comfort zone. If you want something, then it’s up to YOU to actually go after it – nobody else is going to give it to you!

The three lessons above are some of the main things I want to pass on to everyone because they’ve come at an important time in my life where I need to start thinking about others instead of only myself. It’s great if we can learn to love ourselves first before anything else, but that doesn’t mean you should neglect everyone around you even though they might be your friends and family members!

If you enjoyed this article on the 3 most important things I learned about personal growth, then please share it with your friends and family! Also, check out my other articles on success & motivation as well as life lessons that could help people who are struggling with their life right now on lifengoal.com. Thanks for reading!

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​​4 Boss Level Growth Strategies That Create an Optimized Life

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Building a business is about more than sales, marketing, and flexing on social media. While those things tend to draw attention, they attract the wrong type of clients and are not how you build a sustainable and freedom-focused business. (more…)

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