To Err Is Human, To Grow Is … WINNING!

NOTE: If you know any perfectionists, share this post with them! ?

I’m convinced that those who practice accountable thinking process mistakes in a healthy manner. Sure, we all say “to err is human” — but do we truly allow ourselves to slip up?

I mean, even the, ahem, “pros” blow it.

Pros Who Err

Some observations:

— An NFL quarterback running to his right throws the football across his chest to his left (a classic high school mistake) right into the arms of an opposing player who scores the winning TD.

— An MLB centerfielder reaches for a routine fly ball only to watch it land in his glove, bounce out, and fall to the ground as the batter reaches second base.

— Longtime, experienced sports broadcasters are caught speaking embarrassing words into a hot mic; comments the public was not to hear.

— An experienced political candidate is caught on camera staring at his watch during a debate giving an out-of-touch “I’m bored” impression. A bad look for any politician.

In summary, I’ll state here what we all already know:


What Not To Say

The bottom line is experts in every arena make mistakes — All. The. Time.

So, should we beat ourselves up with that classic negative self-talk? Should we bash ourselves to ourselves? Nope.

Those who control their thoughts resist this thinking:

I never do anything right!

Why am I so stupid?

I’ll always be a failure.

Other people now think less of me.

This is the most embarrassing moment in my life!

I just can’t learn anything new. I’ll never change.

Thoughts like these are not the thoughts of people who win in life.

What To Do

Let’s stop being so hard on ourselves. Emotionally healthy people are disciplined people. By controlling our thoughts — by pausing to ask a QBQ (tutorial here) such as, “How can I grow from this experience?” — we are able to engage in the right activities and actions after making that dreaded mistake. In other words, we win when we …




Make amends.

Let go, move on.

Forgive ourselves.

Take responsibility.

Put it all in perspective.

Brainstorm a better way.

Breathe, regroup, try again.


Today, ask the QBQ, “What can I do to learn from this experience?” — and then move beyond the moment. That’s what winners like you do.

How good are you at forgiving your mistakes while using them to learn, grow, and change? 


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