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How Do We Learn from Our Mistakes?

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What we may have learned from this year, is that even with the best of intentions, things do not always go the way we wish they might. Regardless, we pick ourselves up, continue moving forward with the information at hand and try to do our best. As such, if you find that you made a mistake, either in the workplace, college or your personal life, you must pick yourself up, move forward and continue doing your best. But how do we do this? How do we learn from our mistakes in order to move forward to continue doing our best, despite setbacks and challenges?

If you find that you have made a mistake, remain calm and remember that there is some positive in the situation. You read that correctly. After the mistake has been made and rectified, identify what went right and incorporate those small victories into your next project. The only way to reduce the number of mistakes we make is to use each as a learning opportunity. If you have made similar mistakes in the past, in addition to identifying what went right, identify the root causes of these mistakes. Are you seeing a pattern?

There may be times when you have made a mistake but are unclear how or why it occurred. You may have planned well, read all the instructions and took your time but mistakes were still made. The best way to understand the situation is to listen to feedback. Do not think of criticism in a negative manner or as proof of any shortcomings. If you are being offered feedback, you have the opportunity to listen to other perspectives, learn and improve.

The key is to remember that failure is part of the process, but you will learn, advance and be more ready for what lies ahead. This year has taught us that people are resilient, strong and unstoppable. And though we may face new challenges, tough situations and unforeseen hurdles, we will come out the other end even stronger, tougher and more ready than ever to take on what every life may throw our way.

-Dina Barabash, NASBA Content Development & Web Specialist