CoSozo Living

All articles

Mon, April 1, 2013
Born to Make Mistakes
Do you feel like you have screwed up your life in some way? You are not alone. When we take a look at ourselves, don’t we all feel the same way in some aspects of our life? After all, we are human. No one is perfect. It seems there was a popular song based on that some time ago.

So what do you do when you feel like you have screwed up something? Run? Hide? Or, blame yourself or others? Either way, you avoid situations, shift focus onto something else, and move onto your busy life. However, one day, you realize your wrong turns, and find yourself being disappointed, feeling regrets and sorrows.

A millions of “shoulds”, “woulds”, “coulds” pop up in your mind. You start to count your regrets. You begin feeling very unhappy. You start to wonder inside yourself about a thousand or more “if onlys”. You feel angry at yourself and others. Then, you spend a lot of time agonizing and criticizing yourself over things in the past that you can’t change and undo.

Stop counting regrets! Don’t spend any more energy on them. Now, you have realized your wrong turns. It is the first step. It is very hard to take responsibility and accept your mistakes. In some ways, it is easier to stay in the past and continue ruminating about your wrong turns. However, don’t waste any more time by dwelling on regrets. For some past things, you feel like it is too late to correct them and you feel like you can never make up for it because the person whom you want to reconnect with is no longer here.

However, it is never too late to do the right thing. It’s better than never. You don’t want to live your life feeling unhappy or full or regrets. It is okay to forgive yourself. The time is now. Make positive changes in your life. You wish you could turn back the clock, but you can’t go back to the past. The only thing you have is now. Even though you can’t go back in time, there are always ways to amend your wrong doings because you are still here. What is important here is that you correct them in a way you can, when you can, and in your unique way.

Life is about that great journey of self-discovery. We make a lot of mistakes throughout our life. However, those mistakes provide us opportunities for many life lessons. Without them, we are not able to grow as human beings. Our successes and mistakes both are a part of our life. Life is a process, and the beauty of our life is that we are given many chances to amend our slip-ups.

The moment we realize our mistakes is the best time to make changes. Each of us creates a different life map, each very unique to who we are as individuals – all valuable and dotted with the areas of our growth and life experiences. However, time is the one thing that we can never control. We can’t travel to either past or future. Whether we made mistakes in the past or have concerns about our future due to those mistakes, our life is only here and now. The present moment is the only time and the most important time we ever get to do the right thing.

Regardless of the number or gravity of your errors, it is up to you to live your life fully, and happily. The following actions have proven instrumental to my ability to live life with joy and contentment and I hope they help you as well:
  1. Identify What You Can’t Change
Ask yourself what you can and can’t control. Don’t agonize over things that you can’t control. Rather, use those things to practice acceptance and surrender. Accept them as they are. Don’t use avoidance or withdrawal from them. It will make it harder to accept them. To be open minded you have to accept whatever is happening around you, positive and negative.    
  1. Be Present
Learn to be in the present moment. Listen to what’s going on within your mind and body. Be fully present whatever is happening within you. Our mind is very reactive to things around us. However, try to stay in the moment. Practice mindfulness. Being mindful will help you to accept things as they are. Flex your mind. Your mind will become more clear and calm.
  1. Practicing Being Your Authentic Self
The foundation of your happiness, health, and well-being rests on yourself, and all the tools to be content are within yourself. Just look deeply within yourself, and you have all the abilities and potentials within yourself. Accept who you are unconditionally. Don’t be afraid to be yourself.  Don’t change who you are to be accepted. Have faith in yourself. It is important to take responsibility for your actions, but don’t be too critical of yourself. Love and be compassionate to yourself. 
  1. Appreciation
It is easy to fall into the trap of counting what we don’t have. However, take a look around you. You will be surprised how many things you have in your life. For a moment, let yourself focus on what you have. When you start to notice them, write them down and make a list of what you are thankful for. Share the list with someone, and discuss together what you are grateful for.
  1. Change Your Perspective
It can be challenging when we know we’ve screwed up to really come to grips with the extent of our humanity, as well as our flaws. Given a bit of emotional and even physical distance, however, you may find that shifting your perspective is enormously powerful. There is a silver lining in everything, even if it’s not readily apparent. Look within yourself and recognize how much you’ve grown as a result of your errors.

While you’re doing that you may find other ways in which your “errors” really opened you up to other wonderful things. Perhaps you learned humility, or felt a tremendous sense of grace, or your life might have taken a completely new direction that led you to discoveries, people and experiences you wouldn’t have had otherwise. A shift in your perspective can help you anchor the wisdom of your actions and propel you to a new and better future.

Give it a shot. Practice the above list. It will take some time, but you will notice some positive changes in your life. It will give you power to control your life situations. You will become more content about your life. Accept things as they are, and keep anchored within yourself. Everything is constantly changing. Don’t wait until tomorrow. Every moment is all that we have. Embrace this present moment and treasure it.

You will feel fully alive by touching deeply with this present moment. Now is the time to mend the past. When you recognize your slip-ups, it is the perfect time to correct them. Take advantage of the golden opportunity to grow yourself as a human being. Breathe in your thankfulness for those opportunities, and exhale as you remind yourself it is going to be okay.

More articles

Featured Contributors

Stacy Tye-Williams (PhD, organizational communication, University of Nebraska-Lincoln) is an assistant professor of communication studies in the Depar...
Mr. Ron Miller is a distributor for the Farm For Profit Program.  He is the owner of Miller Farm Service in Francisville, Indiana whose services inclu...
Lizzie Burt, IACP: (On the right) A seven-time Hawaii Ironman Triathlon participant, and three-time Boston marathoner, Lizzie is an avid competitor. S...

Popular Articles

As we move from spring to summer, our minds are turning to the great outdoors after a winter of hibe...
Lisa’s Story Lisa is a hard-working woman who has dedicated her life to the service of others. A spe...
Introduction You have all the symptoms of low thyroid: cold hands and feet, no energy, weight gain i...

Popular Blogs

Some people ask whether I do Neurofeedback on myself.  I sure do.  I think it’s an important part of...
Stress comes to us in many forms, from someone cutting us off in traffic to our boss coming in and t...
I often tell people that leadership is an actual science, just like any other area of study. I stres...