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Gifts for Your Success: Day 4 - Making Mistakes

12 Days of Christmas

Day 4: Gift of Making Mistakes

I was chatting with my coach this morning and sharing some of the personal and professional mistakes I've made this year. Yes, I made a few doozies regarding my time management, commitments, and communications. Oops!

My coach and I agreed we would begin working on a strategy to help me approach the upcoming year with more focus. I'm not going to choose comfort over my personal and professional growth. As I thought about our conversation, I know this new year will be a year of hard work for me! It will not be free of more errors and shortcomings on my part. As my coach oftentimes reminds me, I must overcome my fear of making mistakes, and continue to develop a strong mindset of perseverance.

I was reminded of one of my favorite quotes by Theodore Roosevelt’s “The Man in The Arena.”

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how a strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds, who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spins himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly…”

If you are early in your career, well into your career, or making any type of change in your personal or professional life, our insight and wisdom is earned through our errors and shortcomings. I don’t know about you, but I would much rather be like “The Man in The Arena.” We can’t grow without making mistakes and adapting our behavior based on what we learn from our errors and shortcomings.

Here are five things to help you embrace the gift of making mistakes:

  1. Hang out with people smarter than you; listen and learn from them.

  2. Find a mentor and a coach; you’ll need both.

  3. Be open to correction when you mess up.

  4. Learn quickly from your mistakes and never make the same one twice.

  5. Develop a sense of humor.

No one likes admitting to their mistakes, particularly when we have invested our time, emotions, or money, but our progress is a result of walking through that door named, PUSH! Pushing forward and feeling uncomfortable by taking some risks, making mistakes, and being open to correction when we mess up.

When you make mistakes (and you will), at least make them while “daring greatly.”

May the gifts of joy, peace and happiness be yours this holiday season. Stick with us to check out Day 5.

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