Learning from our mistakes

I believe that learning from our mistakes is pivotal to our success, but that without mistakes we cannot grow spiritually or understand what it is to succeed.

I also believe that when anyone gives us feedback, we can learn from our mistakes. Feedback shouldn’t be classified as failure for us not being successful in the first place. It should be used as an opportunity for us to seek to change, so that we may succeed.

When we don’t succeed the first time, it doesn’t mean we haven’t been successful, we cannot measure success that way. All it means is that we need a different approach to going further. Accepting a challenge is success, because the challenge itself has brought us to a different place, more than if we chose not to have a go.

Not walking away with first prize doesn’t mean we’ve failed. I believe that we learn less from our stories of success than we do from our mistakes. If we are successful, we never stop to question that success; we just take it for granted that we achieved it and the chapter gets closed. What we should be doing is recognising that success; look at how we got to be successful, so that we have the potential to create even more success stories.

It would be wrong to think that because we have success in one area of our life that other areas will be just as successful. If only life was that easy. We will grow and learn to be successful, when we work through the basics of how we got there. We need to experiment; we need to take risks and try out new things.

The things that we think will help us achieve success. We also need to hear what I would call constructive criticism so that we allow ourselves to gain an insight into how we can be successful. Many of us continue to see feedback as a criticism of us, but I believe we need to separate the two issues.

Feedback solely allows us to think about what we’re doing so that we get to change the outcome and find success second time around.


13 May, 2011

6 thoughts on “Learning from our mistakes

  1. I agree. I think some of us learn from our mistakes the first time and others learn after a few times.

    Just because we don’t come in first doesn’t mean we have failed just as you’ve said. We have to give perfection plenty of time if that’s what we’re going after; but life isn’t going to be perfect and some of us can’t get that in our heads. I’ve learned that myself.

    I use to think everything had to be perfect. But after my last marriage, I learned my house isn’t going to be spotless. I used to be very anal! now I accept not being perfect… and now my daughter struggles with perfection just as I did and she knows it.

    She learned it from me and I’m so sorry she did because it’s miserable for her and causes her much stress when things aren’t perfect.

    1. You are right, some of us learn from our mistakes after the first time, others learn after a few times and some people probably don’t learn at all.

      I think it’s nice to be successful, but not a priority. For me it would be more important to be happy and have peace in my life, than strive for success and have nothing beyond it.

  2. Learning from our mistakes is important so that we do not repeat them again. I agree with what you have said in this blog.

    If we never make mistakes we would never grow as people. I have always had a big problem with criticism, how it is presented to me. I guess I am just too sensitive. I tend to get defensive. Natural reaction I think.

    1. You are absolutely right Randy.

      It is a natural reaction to react when we think someone is being critical over something we say or do, but I am sure the majority of what people do say is done in good faith.

      We just have to remember that when we feel compelled to react!

  3. This is very true. In any aspect of life we can learn from our mistakes. I think what separates happy and successful people from the rest is they’ve learned from their mistakes and adapted to the situation. But others never learn and just keep making the same mistakes.

    You’re right that if we never try something or experiment, we will never know what we are capable of. If you take inventions for example, no invention is perfect the first time, as years go on many inventions are made better and we as humans learn from making inventions better.

    If we just keep making the same invention over and over we can’t learn what the invention is fully capable of by changing it for the better.

    1. Ditto, I agree with you completely. I like the example you’ve used. Many technological advances have come about through what might seem at first sight to be a failure or mistake.

      Without experimenting, recognising and working through some of our mistakes, we will never know or experience our true capabilities. Welcome aboard and thanks for posting.

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