The Fit Student—The Purpose of Mistakes

We are all placed in this world to learn lessons.  And how do we learn our lessons? Through hardships or mistakes.  Wear your scars like badges of honour, says my beloved friend, but sometimes our mistakes have grave consequences.  Like a one punch bar fight that leads to a death.

I believe we are not meant to walk away from mistakes with blame, hardened hearts, hatred, or smallness.  No one needs to be vilified.  I believe mistakes exist for us to tap into our higher selves, for us to learn noble traits: forgiveness, honesty, perseverance, authenticity, compassion, or unconditional love.  I also believe mistakes arise for us to take responsibility from a growth-mindset, and less from a guilty conscience.  “Very often, we do something that we wish we hadn’t done.  Instead of simply feeling bad about it, let us look at the situation objectively, and see what we could have done better, so that we won’t make the same mistake again when confronted with a similar situation” (36%).  The life-lesson you glean from mistakes have the power to bring you to a place of peace.  “We should always look at the situation objectively, to see how we can resolve it, and what we can learn from it” (36%).

When you make a mistake, try to seek an upbeat solution.  Whatever you do, don’t let yourself get triggered into hopelessness.  “If you let situations and words dictate your mood, then you’re a prisoner to these instances.  You’re a hostage to anything and everyone around you.  It’s not about being mentally tough here, but rather letting go of that which triggers negative responses.  It takes a re-wiring of the mind, or at least quieting it for the most part.  It’s about creating positive habits and putting them into practice in a self-disciplined and consistent fashion” (5%).

So, when you make mistakes, try to watch your thoughts.  “Be extremely careful what you’re allowing into your mind, and how you’re interpreting it.  Perceptions dictate everything, from insecurities and self-conscious behavior, to intentional success seeking traits” (8%).

In other words, shift negative thought to helpful ones—even to positive, constructive thoughts.  “We need to be happy first, then accomplishing the things we are working towards becomes exponentially easier and less stressful by very nature.  Its counterintuitive, but you have to relentlessly ensure you are thinking happy thoughts throughout each day to retain this positive disposition” (49%).

Whenever struck by a tragic mistake, seek the lessons.  By doing so, your suffering finds purpose.

Chambers, Katherine.  (2018).  Mental Toughness A Psychologist’s Guide to Becoming Psychologically Strong – Develop Resilience, Self-Discipline & Willpower on Demand.  E-Book.