How many opportunities did you let slip through your fingers in the past year because you were afraid of making a mistake? Did you learn a new skill, go for that big promotion, or book that plane ticket? This irrational fear of making mistakes could be holding you back from more than you realize. You’ve got 365 glorious days to take new risks, make new mistakes, and teach yourself something new in the process.
First, you need to understand that experimenting isn't failure. It's the learning curve to success. Think of toddlers as they learn to take their first steps. How many times did they fail before they found success? They fall over and over again, always getting back up, learning from their failed attempts, to eventually take off running.
This is no different than the setbacks of everyday life. But how will you learn from your mistakes if you quit? How will you achieve or create if you don't risk a mistake?
A negative outcome decreases the chance of you repeating the same behaviour. By making mistakes you teach yourself to think critically and problem solve; you’re trying new techniques, pushing yourself, changing your perspective, and learning until you’re able to achieve your goals.
By making mistakes you’re given the opportunity to learn something about yourself. Mistakes allow you to face your fears, showcase your bravery, or bring you back down to earth and keep you humble. Think about how past mistakes have shaped your personality, your social development, your life experience, and the wisdom you’ve gained through it all. These mistakes have made you who you are today.
This year, shift your perspective; view a mistake as a lesson and ask yourself what knowledge you can take from this “mistake” that will push you in the right direction.