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October 20, 2008.

"If you're going to make an error, make a doozey."
Billie Jean King

We all make mistakes. In fact, we make lots of them. Our lives are literally littered with an endless array of bad moves, faulty decisions and stupid choices from one end to the other. Try as we might, the mistakes just keep on coming, one right after the other. And while we want to do better; we want to stop making all of the mistakes we make, we keep making them.

If you have ever felt like a mistake making machine, where messing up seems to be the name of your game, there's no need to feel alone. We've all been there. So go ahead and join the club.

You have probably tasted the bitter pill of defeat more times than you care to remember. But so have the best of the very best. That's right; even the biggest winners on earth have walked in your shoes, having made many of the same slip-ups and blunders you have made. And just like you, they continue to make them to this day. Yet despite all of their mistakes and missteps, assorted gaffes and errors in judgment, these top achievers always manage to come out on top.

And so can you.

"Bold botches are to be cherished."
Tom Peters

If you peruse the history books, you'll discover that some of the biggest mistakes ever made have been made by people many consider the best in the business. And while their glaring mistakes are as varied as the individuals themselves, these high flying mistake-makers had one thing in common. Each and every time they got knocked down, they got up, got better and got going again.

They never allowed any mistake, no matter how big or devastating, to quell their passion, their fervor, their unrelenting desire to achieve something great. No matter how often and how badly they messed things up, they just kept getting up again and again, constantly moving in the direction of their goals and aspirations.

Rather than run away from their mistakes, these go-getters learned to embrace them, correct them and make their lives better. With each mistake made, they got smarter. With every setback hurdled, they got stronger. With every miscue handled, they grew increasingly more confident and self assured. They never allowed failure to have the final say. And in the process, they left an indelible mark.

"Mistakes are the portals of discovery."
James Joyce

When it comes to making mistakes, here are two big ones you CAN absolutely avoid making.

The first is worrying about making mistakes in the first place. Since youre going to make them regardless of whether you like it or not, you need to stop worrying and start learning how to effectively deal with them. Some folks are so concerned about doing something wrong, they end up doing nothing. And end up going nowhere.

Worrying about mistakes is not going to keep you from making them. So quit worrying - and start doing.

The second mistake is repeatedly making the same mistakes over and over again, never really changing what you do. Many people keep doing the same things, in the same way, while hoping they will somehow get a different result. Kind of like banging your head against the wall and hoping it'll stop hurting. Come on now, if you keep on doing the same old stuff, why in the world should you expect anything but the same old results?

The only way to change what you're getting, to change where you're going, is to change what you're doing.

"Mistakes are merely steps up the ladder."
Paul J. Meyer

If you're going to move forward in life, mistakes are going to happen. That's just the way it goes. In fact, if you're not presently making a lot of mistakes, chances are pretty good that you're not accomplishing a whole heck of a lot either.

Let's face it, if you're going to get anywhere worth going, you're going to have to get off the beaten path and try out some new ideas, attempt some new things. And be willing to make some new mistakes as well.

Deep down, there's a little bit of a river boat gambler inside of you. A let's roll the dice and make something happen enthusiasm for living that wants to take some chances, take some risks, to see what you can accomplish in life. Instead of bottling this free-wheeling spirit up, you need to turn it loose and let it do its thing.

And then, when you make a mistake (which you're going to do from time to time), you need to take a moment and gather yourself. Look at what went right, determine what went wrong and then put together a new and improved course of action. Then give it another whirl, another try, another shot. And then keep repeating the process until you get it right.

If you truly want to be successful, then why not do what the big boys do? Get busy making something happen, making some mistakes and making yourself better along the way.

The Bottom Line: Worrying about making mistakes is the biggest mistake you'll ever make.


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Author: Greg Hickman


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