I am 29. Twenty-nine. 2-9. Veinte y nueve.
I know. I know that isn’t that old, but sometimes I feel like I have lived my life …a few times over. , and every time I get an opportunity to “re-live” an experience, I’ve found that I have been smarter, much more successful and maybe just a little bit (….ok…ALOT) more critical when it comes to decision making.
So why do I get to write about SELF? Well, probably because I have made my share of mistakes. I’ve been wrong when it comes to; love, family, education, work, physical welfare, friendships …and the list continues. Side-note: just so you KNOW, in-person I am usually adamant that I am NEVER wrong about anything (one of my many wonderful characteristics). So yes, I said it. I’ve made mistakes. Now, I don’t believe that mistakes make The Man(or Woman), but I am a firm believer that mistakes, once they are recognized as such, are the best learning opportunities a person can have.
. First one must define a mistake. What is a mistake? By definition a mistake is:
to blunder in the choice of <mistook her way in the dark>
to misunderstand the meaning or intention of : misinterpret <don’t mistake me, I mean exactly what I said>
to make a wrong judgment of the character or ability of
to identify wrongly : confuse with another <I mistook him for his brother>
Hmmmm.. okay so, yeah…. I’ve made a few of those, you know….just a couple… So where do we go from here? And how do we move past it?
1. Define your own “mistakes.”
The biggest problem people have is they let society define their mistakes. In an ideal world people would not judge others by what they did or did not do. However, we all know this is not the case (everybody has SOMETHING to say about everything —and you can bet, they have something to say about YOU and the choices they see YOU make). So it is up to you to determine where the blunder was made, what caused it, and how to fix it. Living your life chasing everyone’s expectations is going to get you 1. depressed and 2. very tired, because you’ll be running your entire life. Becoming a teacher when allllllll your parents wanted was a lawyer in the family… is not a mistake – it is a choice. Know the difference. In every situation set your own expectations.
2. Know the difference.
Know the difference between mistakes and choices. I am 29 right? I have made many choices in my life — some good, some disastrous, some with urgency, and some that I wish I had spent more time mulling over. Life is unpredictable and consequently, you can’t slow it down. Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you had to make an expeditious decision? Do I go LEFT or RIGHT? ……..crap, I missed the turn. Yeah. That happens all the time. Frequently the choices we have to make, need to be done in a split second – sometimes we don’t have time to rationalize, sometimes we just want to follow our heart, and sometimes we realize —- we missed the turn. We made a bad choice, but in the moment –it seemed like the best decision. This happens in love all the time. We fall in love. We go blind. We make choices based on emotion and in that freeze frame we are HAPPY. That is until (.. I can be such a downer..) ….things do not work out,
then all of a sudden, that choice becomes a mistake? ….No. it doesn’t. Learn the difference between a mistake and a choice. Also, don’t let others make you feel like all the choices they didn’t agree with – are your mistakes. Mistakes hurt people, mistakes set you back. A choice – just like chance, can go both ways — up, up, up, or….doowwwnn..damnit what was I thinking?! …. The good thing is though — if you miss the turn, you can always turn around.
3. Re-evaluate every so often.
Make your choices, makes your mistakes, but always take time to re-assess the situation. Life changes, and at times, quite dramatically. You might have been happy with a choice you made 6 months ago, but maybe that choice doesn’t make you happy anymore. Don’t get stuck in a rut. Don’t get comfortable, don’t get lazy, and do not accept your past choices when they no longer suit you. This is where good friends or family can come into play. Sometimes we just need a sounding board. Talking about your thoughts with someone you trust, can be very beneficial and stress-relieving. We aren’t meant to walk this earth alone, people are brought into our lives for a reason, and there is a moment in all of our lives when our ONLY purpose is — to LISTEN (remember that). Re-evaluate. If you do not change, you do not grow. A stagnate self will most likely become an unhappy self — a complacent self — a non-inspired self — who wants to be that type of person? Uh nobody. So make a list of your choices and make sure they still work for you. Make sure they still fit your goals. Make sure, they still make sense. Got it..
Like I said — I’ve made mistakes, I’ve made choices (some would say that said “choices” were mistakes –screw them) , and I am going to continue to do so. I’m only 29 right? I’ve got plenty of time to make a few more in both categories. Self growth is just the realization that we aren’t perfect. There will always be people who think given the same circumstances that they could have done something differently or better than you– and the truth of the matter is — it doesn’t matter, it is your life. We are living it, to make ourselves happy. So do that. Go be happy. Happiness is a choice too ya know.