What happens when you make a mistake?
I have had my own challenges with judging myself when I make a mistake. Over the years, I have realized the amount of pressure I put on myself to do things right. It could be due to me being an oldest child. It could be because I focus on perfection. It could be due to a false belief that I need to make others happy.
A key factor I have come to better understand is my underlying meaning about making mistakes and my overall relationship to making mistakes.
Here are some journal entries I wrote in the past that are related to my relationship to making mistakes.
JOURNAL ENTRY FEBRUARY 1, 1999
I have been doing a fair bit of writing in the last little bit. Maybe it’s that time of the year. This
past weekend has really hit hard. I did something quite stupid and was lucky the situation
didn’t get worse. I panicked like I have never done before. No control is no fun. I made a
mistake and it hit me point blank. I kept saying over and over, I should have …. If only ….
I want to go back in time and correct my error. Of course, we all want to do this impossible
JOURNAL ENTRY JULY 11, 2000
I locked my keys in my car; I’m the CEO of the largest co. in the world.
I spilled hot coffee all over my new pants; I make 14 million dollars a movie.
I farted in public today; I’m the leader of this country.
My fly was down all day; I have my own talk show.
I forgot to call my mom on her birthday; I’m normal just like everybody else.
When I know I’m going to have to speak up in a group, my heart speeds up, I feel warm, I feel
nervous, my mind loses focus on what I’m going to say, I keep repeating in my head what I’m
going to say, I don’t look at people I’m talking to, I blank them out until I’m done.
My mouth is moving, but I don’t know what is coming out.
Exercise for You
- What do you believe is going to happen if you make a mistake?
- What actually happens to you when you make a mistake?
- How do you handle it?
- Do you accept it and learn from it?
- Do you replay your mistake in your mind over and over?
- Does it impact your self-confidence and/or your self-esteem?
- What lessons have you learned from the mistakes you have made?
Exercise for Your Team or Group
- What do you believe is going to happen if your team or group makes a mistake?
- What actually happens when the team or group makes a mistake?
- How does the team handle it?
- Does the team accept it and learn from it?
- Does the mistake impact the performance of the team?
- What lessons has your team or group learned from the mistakes it has made?
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This blog post is from Lesson #11 from the book, “Engage, Connect, Grow – 52 lessons to guide individuals and corporate teams to the heart of what truly matters to them.”