Ah! What a stupid question to ask?! That’s our instant reaction, right?! See, if the question itself sounds stupid, then imagine how really making mistakes would land on you! Don’t worry, you are not alone to feel this way. Most of us live this way, including me. We have a strong aversion to making mistakes & so we live a certain life, a life that is a guarantee to some of the aspects, some of the nuances but not all. This stance guarantees us just a little of what could have been possible. This stance limits us from expanding ourselves to infinity. Our natural desire is to expand, to be free, not to be bounded; but we create the prisons and we live inside of it cribbing, complaining, regretting & also being okay with it. Sometimes some truths are hard to digest because it shows us that side of us that we don’t want to see or get present to because it is so painful, so unsettling, so triggering.
Every time I think of me & everyone around, I find that we are so gifted, highly potential and resourceful, but we aren’t using even an iota of that. Every time we desire to stand up to our greatness, we get stopped not just by others who are fearful but by us too. It is more of our own stances, that stops us from creating what we desire. And the greatest of all things that holds us back is nothing but OUR FEAR OF MAKING MISTAKES. Mistakes start defining us and who we become. But that’s the interpretation of the world and us. That is not the truth. Mistakes are simply mistakes. We make them painful memories and hold on to them making it mean something about us, the person or any subject in that context. We have great ideas, but we keep these to ourselves. Don’t we?! I can assert this because: one, I did like this and two, I know of many people who have done this. The questions that holds me/them back are usually these: What if this isn’t good? What if I look stupid? What if I get rejected? What if it doesn’t work out? What if people laugh at me? What if my life gets messier than what it looks now? What if…………? You can use your fear here to fill the gaps. Just for a second ask this another question: “What you are assuming; can you be 100% sure?” In this mind game, we tend to give up, resign already & not start anything. And mind being mind, it’ll keep popping up with newer & brilliant ideas to find solace in the fact that it is just going to be inside the mind only without coming out in the real world to play the game. We fear playing the game honestly. Did you come across anyone who just by thinking & ideating & not diving into the reality created anything miraculous?! Obviously not! Sometimes I wonder what I have created by holding on to this stance of being perfect, not making mistakes and hiding if I make mistakes out of fear of humiliation, looking stupid and what not! Honestly, nothing! In fact, in the act of not creating the mess outside, I created the mess inside of me.
Long back I learnt not to make mistakes. Because making mistakes wasn’t fun. Who would love to bear the consequences of it? All the shame, guilt and repercussions are hard to handle. But only if you look at it that way and sadly, we are made to look at it that way. Yes, we are made to look at making mistakes that way, we are conditioned everywhere this way. Even in the corporate, you’ll agree that although you are asked to think out of the box, generate new ideas; when you do, you are not received well by many & even the leader is not able to give you the space to make mistakes for many constraints that (s)he is bounded by. We are leaving in constant fear of losing out, missing out, falling short, running behind etc. So, we just give ourselves limited chances. But our exploration of our gifts and its manifestation needs time and more chances than what we are willing to give ourselves.
As the year is winding up, I am sure you all are going to take stock of things. You are going to do an inventory count for 2019. What worked, what didn’t? What was awesome, what wasn’t? What got created and what didn’t? What goals got manifested and what didn’t? etc. Hardly do we take stock of our mistakes. What if we ask ourselves this question, “How many mistakes did I make this year?” As you ask yourself this question, be gentle and kind on yourself. Sit without judgement, don’t sit with a mindset to find fault & beat yourself up, but to take pride in yourself for the fact that you did something out of your way; for something that you were fearful of; for something that you weren’t sure/certain of but you did. As you open you heart to this, you’ll notice a shift in the way you look at mistakes. This stance will enable you to dive into newer, creative and innovative ways. It’ll open the doors to possibilities, of ways that you didn’t know existed. Make mistakes, take stock, forgive, let go, take a new stance, take a renewed goal and again be willing to make mistakes, to let the mess be created, to allow yourself to sit in the discomfort, be willing to play and not just focus on winning. Because after winning, you’ll again feel the vacuum for you haven’t enjoyed the play truly. Make your game infinite and not just fixated with just winning. And if you play without inhibition, without control of self from making mistakes, you will any which ways win. If not anything you will make your life memorable & you’ll be left with a better experience of life. Because as you look back, those wins which were difficult and allowed you to stretch, made a greater impact than the ones that you played safe & comfortably.
My intention for 2020 is to allow myself to make mistakes, make mess & not make it mean anything about me but make it memorable. For I know, where I hold back is what needs my attention & action. And that which I’ll resist will persist. As I look back on 2019, in my mistakes I learnt greatest of all lessons, deepest connections were formed and most of all I grew as a person, as a leader and as a coach. And so, I can allow others to make mistakes & give them an “A” despite of that; give my trust to them. And life is about growing and not controlling us from expanding. As I dive into the unknown trajectory, I will make mistakes for that’s a new ground, but what if I look at it not as mistakes but my willingness to redefine my definition of mistakes?! Making mistakes is much more joyous than sitting in regret for not trying to make one.
In the words of the awesome Sara Blakely, “Go ahead, make mistakes. The worst that can happen is you become memorable.”
Those who made/make a dent in the Universe are the ones who never stopped after making mistakes. Are you willing to allow yourself to making mistakes in 2020? And for the mistakes that you made in 2019, are you willing to let go of those painful memories & recreate a positive stance? Because it’s the mindset that you would choose to carry forward in 2020 that would shape your experiences of life eventually.
Wishing you a joyous, abundant, fulfilling & fantastic 2020. May you live in your essence and experience life in totality.
Believing in you.
#life #leadership #coaching #insights #mistakevsexperience #livinginessence
Life & Organizational Development Coach