Life Lessons: The Importance of Mistakes

The lessons we learn by actively engaging with our experiences constitute an invaluable education that we should pursue throughout our lives.  Just imagine a surgeon who has read a book about how to do an appendectomy, but has never actually touched an instrument.  This is far from the ideal situation.

And the opposite is also true — experience alone does not constitute learning.  We need to meet out experiences with presence of mind and consciousness to fully integrate what we are exposed to into a true understanding; one marked by the ability to teach others what we have learned or to reach out and help others with our “knowledge” directly. It is only then, with this practical appreciation for life and the development of a skill to make a difference in the world, that we have truly learned.

sun cloudsBut to be clear, this is not always an easy process, nor a straight road. Inevitably some of what we learn comes from things that do not work out. To that end, we should not fear making “mistakes,” because those experiences can also lead to learning if one stays primarily focused on the lesson and not the outcome. This is not to say that mistakes should be intentionally sought.  Rather, if one is committed to learning, than one can cultivate an attitude of better awareness and creatively use “mistakes” so that they transform into something positive.

When one grows from their mistakes they become a positive force for change and influence. Ultimately, this is about being conscious at every turn and maintaining deep awareness.  In addition, it means maintaining faith that there are lessons from every situation that fulfill our lives and enrich our destiny. With this in mind, in the end, these mistakes really can be viewed in an entirely new context — not a mistake at all. Indeed, this is about finding new eyes.

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