Have you ever been told “learn from people’s mistakes”? There’ll always be someone telling you this now and then. And if you don’t take note of it and end up making the same mistake, dozens of told-you-so’s are going to rain down on you.
We humans were born to make mistakes and learn from them, not to fake perfection. Mistakes are a part of human being. The life given to us comes with a full liberty to make mistakes. After all, freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes. The privilege that we don’t get is to repeat those mistakes. We all make mistakes, it’s how we come back from those mistakes that matters. Our mistakes don’t define us, but how we deal with them, what we learn from them and how we apply the lesson to our lives.
“To make mistakes is human, to stumble is commonplace, to be able to laugh at yourself is maturity.”
Now that making mistakes is somehow justified, there are two things that matter the most after you’ve made a mistake: owning your mistakes & learning from them. If you make a mistake, show at least enough courage and compassion to own your mistake. More people would be learning from their mistakes if they weren’t busy denying them at first place. Your mistake might not hurt the people around you as much as your denying it hurts. If you did it, own it and deal with the consequences. Don’t add insult to the injury by not owning your mistakes or by repeating them. What people don’t get is, mistakes are made to learn from them not to repeat them. Repeating them may just ruin everything. Don’t push people far over the edge because eventually they’ll become tired, even the people who love you. Every mistake almost always ignites some consequences, face them and make up for your mistakes. If there weren’t any consequences, that doesn’t mean what you did or said wasn’t really bad. You never know how bad it hurt from outside just like you can’t judge an ocean’s depth from the shore.
When it is so hard for us to learn from our own mistakes, how can we expect to learn from people’s mistakes. The truth is we DON’T learn from people’s mistakes. We may make a deep observation of them, make notes to ourselves to not land in such situations and maybe also take every possible caution to avoid them. But once we land in the same scenario, we almost never apply all those advises and all those thoughts-to-self at that time. We find excuses for ourselves and how somehow our situation is different from the others. At last, we end up making the same mistakes, continuing the pattern.
The reality is that when someone else makes a mistake, only he’ll know the agony of facing its consequences. No one else will, the way he does. Once we suffer some sort of emotional or psychological stress, we’ll remember for life the situation that led to it. But when you are just the audience you might not relate to it that deeply, so you won’t learn your lesson. Maybe, that’s just how we are cut out to be. 🙂
One can always try to learn from people’s old mistakes and make some new ones. As we do have the permission to make mistakes, but not to repeat them. 🙂