Trial and error is an integral part of reality; it is the way of nature. Life itself, as we know it, is a perpetual trial and error process.
Life endures, through millions of years of variation and selection. Organisms evolve and adapt in order to raise their chances of survival. The ones who do adapt outlive those who don’t until others adapt better than them and eventually outlive them as well. Not every adaptation is successful, and not every variation survives.
Nevertheless, nature never gives up. It always finds creative and innovative ways to help life adapt accordingly, in order to ensure its survival.
As human beings, we are the pinnacle of this natural trial and error process, and through it, we have been granted the opportunity to consciously tap into nature’s power. We have evolved in such a way, in the image of nature our creator, to be able to consciously recognize our errors, gain knowledge from them and swiftly adapt in order to minimize our suffering and thrive.
Fool Me Once
Our life’s path is naturally doused with mistakes and errors of judgment, unexpected situations, and miscalculated decisions. Realizing our mistakes and holding on to the lessons they offer tightly, is a crucial step towards achieving our goals, fulfilling our purpose and ultimately dwelling in happiness and serenity.
However, people nowadays tend to lack the ability to learn from their experiences. As a result, they become trapped inside the same mistake loops, over and over again until critical lessons are realized and finally learned.
Those who ignore their mistakes are condemned to suffer. Mistakes are indicators that some aspect of ourselves has to change. We get fooled once, it really is not our fault; we get fooled twice, it is because we missed the lesson the first time.
Mistakes are like roadsigns which help us find our way back to the highway when we have been driving for a while on an unpaved, rural, country road. By ignoring that we have gone off the road, we are running the risk of getting lost. And the longer it takes to realize that we are offroad, the more effort it will eventually take to return to the highway.
What Doesn’t Kill You…
Have you ever heard the saying “what doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger”?
If you were to look up the word “mistake” into a dictionary, the saying above should exist as its most accurate description.
In today’s society, we have been taught that before we make any decision, we have to analyze it from a thousand different angles in order to be mistakeless. This attitude is not merely wrong; it is impossible and counterproductive as well.
When we shift our perspective and attitude towards our mistakes and start looking at them with a different set of eyes, we can grow much faster, stronger, and wiser. The more mistakes we make, the more resilient we will become, as long as we proactively learn from these mistakes and adapt our behavior and actions accordingly.
Of course, I’m not talking about mistakes which might be life threatening. It is common sense that jumping off a skyscraper (without a parachute on your back or a bungee on your feet), or tying yourself on a lightning rod during a thunderstorm, will undoubtedly make you meet your creator before even getting the chance to learn any kind of lesson.
Mistakes Are Our Best Teachers
Mistakes obviously and unquestionably make us feel uncomfortable. Feeling uncomfortable is the stimulus needed to realize that change and development have to take place.
When we are feeling comfortable and serene, it’s only natural that we won’t come across the slightest amount of willingness to start questioning, challenging, and altering this state, and thus we remain stagnant.
If we don’t grow uncomfortable, we will never get to question our state of being. And if we never get to question our state of being, we will never get to challenge our perception and beliefs. And if we never get to challenge our perception and beliefs, we will never get the opportunity to improve ourselves and our life.
“The lobster is a soft animal living inside a rigid shell. As the lobster grows inside its shell, the shell itself doesn’t expand and it becomes very confining. When the lobster grows enough and starts feeling under pressure and uncomfortable, it goes under a rock to protect itself from predatory fish, casts off its shell, and produces a new one.” ~Dr. Abraham Twerski
Mistaking Towards Success
Success is a result of constant and consistent failures and mistakes. Nobody has achieved anything worthwhile in this world without failing greatly and making a ridiculous amount of mistakes along the way.
Instead of casting off your mistakes hoping to start anew, think of them as part of your success. Your mistakes are the stories you will tell when they ask you how you succeeded.
Failures are what lead to a better understanding of what’s necessary to be successful. ~The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck
The Mistakes of Others
Everybody makes mistakes eventually, one way or another, willingly or unwillingly.
If you are the kind of person who is already attaining knowledge through your mistakes, you could as well start stretching your horizons by observing other people’s trials and errors.
This way, serving the purpose of learning and growing through experience, instead of having just one input source which, in this regard, is merely your own mistakes, you can have multiple ones (other people’s mistakes).
Moreover, when we are not directly emotionally involved with a situation, a mistake of another in this sense, we can perceive it through a clearer more objective perspective, discern the bigger picture, realize more lessons, gain more insights, and become aware of ways to avoid falling into the same or similar pitfalls ourselves.
Nevertheless, we have to be aware that ultimately, no-one’s mistakes can possibly teach us as much as our own.
It is not wise to become fearful of making our own mistakes. Suffering is our chrysalis, and through suffering, suffering ends.
Suffering is biologically useful. It is nature’s preferred agent for inspiring change. ~The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck
Keep the Lesson, But Throw Away the Experience
The most important lessons in life are learned the hard way, which despite common belief, is the right way. A lesson within a mistake is more likely to be realized and truly learned if pain is present.
However, too much pain fogs our perception rendering us unable to hold onto the lessons our mistakes offer, as well as overwhelmed and unwilling to keep making them.
Commonly, when we make mistakes we tend to agonize over them for long amounts of time, negatively judge ourselves, have regrets, and playing scenarios in our head of how things should have taken place.
This attitude is very stressful and destructive for us; it impedes our growth and improvement.
Instead of holding onto the negative experience itself, try to grab as many lessons as you can from it. Recognize the mistake, find out why it took place in the first place, and how it got corrected. Then let the pain along with the negative experience fade away, and keep looking forward towards the future where you are one mistake wiser.
Take Responsibility for Your Mistakes
Lately, there exists a lack of willingness to admit one’s mistakes, a tendency to blame other people for our own errors and suffering, in an attempt to avoid confronting our actions and putting the right amount of effort needed towards improving our state of being.
Blaming is much easier than admitting. It takes the pressure along with all the responsibilities away from us, makes us feel that we have everything figured out and that anyone but our own self, needs to be fixed.
Moreover, blamers believe that they have no power over their own reality and that those who they blame should have acted differently, having their (the blamer’s) best interest in mind.
In a nutshell, blaming deprives every bit of control over our own lives, making us helpless victims, and leaving us no space for change and improvement.
To beat this victim mentality, every time that something doesn’t go as expected, instead of trying to find someone to put the blame on, assume that you did something wrong and attempt to discover it, even when you believe that you did everything right.
This way, you give yourself the opportunity to always be on the lookout for chances to improve, even when not compulsory.
It feels so much better to be in control of your own state of being, instead of feeling carried along by circumstances and other people’s actions.
Everything isn’t just happening to you, but rather created by you.
Mistakes are agents of improvement and should be embraced and leveraged for our own benefit, in every way possible.
When mistakes are neglected, we are living against our own nature. And when we are living against our own nature, we are bound to suffer greatly.
Nature constantly learns, grows, evolves, and adapts. The wise opposes not to nature, moving in harmony with it, and thus lives blissfully and peacefully.
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