I was doing some sauna therapy today and thinking about what I wanted to blog on next. I started thinking about mistakes that I had made in life and all of the AMAZING things that came from them (you know, the lessons learned). It got me thinking and I just had to post my thoughts.
So many of us think of our mistakes and cringe. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t LOVE making mistakes but I think that there are valuable lessons to be learned from them. Ultimately, it all comes down to your outlook. I believe in certain cases that society makes us feel ASHAMED for our mistakes. Have you ever been made to feel ashamed? Im sure ALL of us have but I am here today to offer you a fresh new (hopeful!) perspective. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO FEEL ASHAMED OF YOUR MISTAKES ANYMORE!
I want to teach you how to “make up” with your mistakes, if you will. Lets start by thinking of one BIG mistake you made in your life. With this in mind, I want you to further think about HOW this affected your life. How did others around you respond? How did your life change as a result? Did you notice that you continued to make mistakes after this? You know, the dreaded domino effect where one thing after the other continued to happen? NO MORE! This is what I call “Mayor of Mistakeville!”
Often times, when we make mistakes, others (those closest to us usually) are right there to point out our misgivings. We tend to get caught in a trap where negative self talk, self bashing, and self loathing seep into our lives and consume us until we no longer feel like we are capable of doing anything right! Well, I am here to challenge you friends! This is NOT how it has to be. I encourage you to look at past mistakes OR current mistakes (sometimes we get caught up in things that we know are wrong) but don’t always know how to stop, and we allow them to consume us and start to use these as POSITIVE POWERS in your life!
I want you to think about these mistakes in a different light. Instead of beating yourself up or feeling like you must make excuses for others, start to seek a deeper understanding of WHY these things are happening and what you can do to fix them. Basically, empower yourself with your mistakes! Yes, you may be thinking I am crazy but no matter how many mistakes I have made in my life (and there have been ALOT!) I was able to use them as stepping-stones to self-improvement and to move myself in a positive direction.
How do you do this? It is quite simple really but it does take practice. Here are some basic principles to help you “make up” with your mistakes and thus improve your life:
**Acknowledge when you make mistakes. This is the BIGGEST ONE! If you keep making excuses for WHY you did certain things without ever owning up, you will continue on in a vicious cycle of repeated mistakes.
**Sit down and soul search. With no one else around (and no one else’s opinions) allow yourself some one on one time to think about what you did and what caused this. How will you use this to improve your life and even more powerfully, the lives of others?
**Assess what you can do to avoid making the same mistake in the future. This is key. You must really seek the lessons as to why things happen.
**BECOME A FORCE TO RECKON WITH! Yep, I did this in my own life! Sometimes, sadly, people like to see us “shamed” but you know what? God never wants to shame us!! He wants us to learn, grow, mature and GLORIFY HIM! So… be bold and SHARE! No matter how bad the mistake is … God knows that we will make them, and he will forgive us if we repent! Use these things to help others! Share your story or testimony so that through your mistakes, others lives are forever changed! BAM!! Take that satan!
** Always remember, we live in a world that is hurting. People are eager to judge but quick to hide their own misgivings. When you realize that we are ALL mistake making “beings” it makes coping so much easier.
**Do not be too tough on yourself! Correct yourself but don’t DEGRADE YOURSELF. There is a big difference.
Friends, all of the above requires soul-searching, truth-telling and boldness! If you are willing to step up to your mistakes and face them head on, learn from them and grow from them…. you will see that future mistakes will be few and far between! More importantly, you will see a JOY and ZEST spring to life within you! There is nothing quite as powerful as using your mistakes for fuel.
I want to leave you with this. Today, right now, throw away all of the shame. What satan means for harm, God can use for good but it requires us to do something different with our pain and mistakes.
Here is to a road of positive healing and making up with your mistakes!