Why are mistakes so hard to swallow? You know that sinking feeling in your stomach, the sweaty palms and the voice in your head screaming "WHAT HAVE YOU DONE?!?" This feeling might be something similar to getting pulled over for the first time, discovering your checking account is overdrawn or accidentally running into the car in front of you while your attention was diverted (on something completely not worth the accident). It's a terrible feeling.
In this situation, I have found myself wishing so hard for a life rewind button. But, we don't get to rewind. We're forced to pick ourselves up and learn from our mistakes, because the only other option is that we stay in a stagnant place, reliving our errors and never forgiving ourselves. What a miserable place to be.
I have made mistakes. There aren't enough fingers and toes to count all of my mistakes. Unfortunately, that "WHAT HAVE YOU DONE?!?" feeling that I referenced above NEVER seems to get easier. In fact, as I get older, I have found that I'm much harder on myself because my performance expectations are higher. I've learned more, so I should know better. Right?
Let's focus on those expectations we set for ourselves. I have come to know only one perfect being and He is the same one who created me and laid out my path to include all of my big and little mistakes. So, why do we set such unachievable, perfect expectations for ourselves? We cannot expect to be perfect and regret-free. We are going to make mistakes! And, the sooner we learn that, the sooner our “what have you done” becomes “what have you learned.”
I've made mistakes for some of the most important people in my life and after it's over and done, those people have offered me some very valuable advice (and a lot of grace). The best I have to share is this: Own it. State the steps you've taken to prevent it from happening again. FOLLOW THROUGH!
We're not perfect. We weren't created to be. It's an unrealistic goal to be perfect. Be you in all your glory! Make mistakes and LEARN from them!
About the Author
Katie O’Brien serves the entire HORNE family with joy each day. She is the executive administrative assistant to Executive Partner Joey Havens and the resident encourager at HORNE. There is no job too little nor too big for her. Her heart of service makes others’ success her top priority. In the process, Katie is succeeding, too.