Thursday, July 5, 2018

Making Mistakes, Learning, & Letting Go of Perfect ~ In Ourselves & Our Kids


We all mistakes.  It doesn't matter how young or old we are, we all make them.  These are the words I was saying to my oldest.

Sometimes it may be one mistake in a moment, sometimes many in that moment.  But we all make them.  Why? Because we are always learning and growing.  Mistakes are a part of that process.  What matters is how we handle those mistakes.

What do we do with them?  How do we respond?  What can we learn from them? How do we move forward?  How do we take what is needed from the experience, learn from, and let it go?

All the mistakes, along with the successes, are what make up our journey.  We can either pile them up on our shoulders or lay them down as stones on our path.

If we choose to place them on our shoulders, then one of two things can happen.  If we pile only mistakes on our shoulders then we begin to feel weighted, unworthy, undervalued.  We begin to let more fear, guilt, worry, anxiety in and our inner negative self critic begins to get too strong a foothold and won't let go easily.

Or if it is only successes we pile up, then we begin to have an unrealistic view of reality.  Our ego gets a bit of a big head and pride rears it's head.

So, instead, let's place them all...all the mistakes...all the successes....under our feet, helping to guide us on this journey.

Not always easy, I know.  But this all got me thinking or well, what my oldest said to me got me thinking.  You see, he told me he doesn't want to make mistakes, hates them, and won't make them anymore.  Which then lead to him saying he wanted things to be perfect.

For a moment, I wondered where he picked this up.  I know I try to make things perfect, but I am learning that perfect doesn't really exist in the sense of our expectations and to be okay with that.  We can plan, dream, try to set things up to be "perfect" but in the end, there are things that don't go quite right and we need to be okay with that sometimes.  Now, that is not to say that there aren't moments that are perfect, where everything seems to come together just right, have a good flow, good timing and in any other circumstances wouldn't have happened.  But to have everything be "perfect" all of the time, for everything, in every way, that just isn't how it goes.

I don't like making mistakes I told him.  No one does.  But what matters is what we do when they happen.  Because you know what, it is going to happen.

He told me he still doesn't like when they happen.  

I know, neither do it.  What is important is that we really try our best.  If we make a mistake, we fix it.

This, for the time being, ended our conversation. But I know the topic will come back around again.  It is my hope that I can help teach my sons to lay down their success and mistakes under their feet and help guide them over this terrain, so that one day they can look at those spots in their lives and see how far they have come.