Don’t fear making mistakes

“If you aren’t making mistakes, you probably aren’t trying hard enough.”

I’m not sure who said that. Probably a lot of people. A lot of very successful people. Entrepreneur types. The kind of people other people want to be like.

But that’s something for another time.

Today, I want to be unoriginal and post a link to an article I read about a week ago written by John Maxwell. He gives great advice on how to use mistakes to your advantage.

Mistakes can be wonderful teachers if we allow them to teach us. Making them can teach us how to do something better and differently. Yes, sometimes they teach us what not to do as well, but only so we can improve and move on beyond the mistake. Mistakes teach us. They show us what not to do and lead us to a better way.

Unfortunately, the lesson most of us seem to learn is that a mistake is failure. I suppose they can lead there, but I prefer looking at them as detours. You’re driving along and you make a wrong turn that takes you to a washed out bridge. Big mistake. Well, it doesn’t have to be. The first thing you do is stop and assess. There are some choices to be made. You can:

  • continue toward the bridge and plunge to your death in the raging river below,
  • stop, give up,
  • turn around and learn from the mistake that you need to follow directions more carefully and try another way toward your goal.

I have likely made a mistake here by writing a longer post than I needed to just to say you should go here and read what John Maxwell writes on the subject. He shares his 5-step “reflective thinking technique” for growing through mistakes.

  1. Review
  2. Reflect
  3. Recover
  4. Rearrange
  5. Recharge

Don’t fear making mistakes. It shows you are trying hard to achieve your goals and are willing to try innovative and new things which will teach you to be better. Just make sure to always learn from them, not be obsessed by them, and use them to move forward and add value to yourself and others.

What advice can you add for mistake recovery? Share in the comment section.