Advertising
Advertising

18 “Mistakes” You Should Make And Never Apologize For

18 “Mistakes” You Should Make And Never Apologize For

Ask any business owner and they’ll tell you that the only way to improve is to try and fail until you get things right. And believe it or not, life works the same way! Here are 18 “mistakes” you ought to shamelessly make, and never apologize for.

1. Not giving your job 100%

There is more to life than work. Sure, it’s what people say you need to do if you’re going to be successful. But it comes with a lot of side effects, not the least of which are burnout and general empathy.

Make the mistake of working for the weekend. Enjoy life outside of work. Who knows, maybe what you enjoyably pursue outside the office will be the key to your hefty and steady paycheck.

2. Staying out late the night before work

Ted Mosby says nothing good ever happens after 2 am. Nay, we say! How in the world are you supposed to find out when good things stop happening until you find the end? You have friends you need to spend time with, right?

Go build those lasting friendships and write those stories you’re going to tell your kids one day. Eventually you’ll settle down and you won’t want to stay out late anymore, so enjoy it while you can. A few rough mornings in the office are worth it.

3. Going after that risky opportunity

Ask any entrepreneur how they became successful, and their story will begin with taking a massive risk. It’s scary. People will tell you you’re wrong or naive all day.

And you very well might fail more royally than the prince himself, but in doing so you pursued something to its end with passion and fervor. That’s what matters.

Advertising

4. Ending a friendship or relationship that doesn’t let you pursue your dreams

You’re a strong independent woman that don’t need no man! But seriously – people come and go; your mind stays. Do you really want to live constantly thinking “what if”?

Let’s answer that for you. You don’t. It doesn’t matter if you achieve great success. What matters is that you made a commitment to yourself, to fulfill your dreams, and you might find success along the way.

5. Spending all your money on experiences

Not everyone wants to work hard for 30 years, then settle down in a little house with a white picket fence. And that’s okay. It’s also okay not to save all your money. It’s okay to travel around the world with no certainty about where you’ll find income.

Spending money doesn’t mean you’re wasting it. You’ll only find out what’s really valuable to you by investing in yourself, so go have that unique experience!

6. Blowing off friends for some you time

Introverted or extroverted, everyone needs alone time. Even if your friends are going to some big party, don’t worry about missing out. Blow them off! You’re valuable, and time with yourself is important.

Indulge in some guilty pleasures. You deserve that bubble bath with a glass of wine and a Nicholas Sparks novel! You go, Glen Coco.

7. Treating Yourself

Money is a fickle thing. You, however, are invaluable. Splurge on yourself! Neglect responsibility and indulge in your hedonistic tendencies, because yes, those shoes do look great on you, and  yes, you will have a paycheck coming in later that week.

Advertising

Life isn’t always about making the “right” financial choices. Yes, you’ll get older and feel the need to spend less. But don’t you dare feel bad about treatin’ yoself. You deserve it.

8. Neglecting to keep up with the latest trends

When was the last time that keeping up with Kardashians provided you with any lasting value? How bad will you really look at family gatherings if you didn’t hear the latest political banter? You can only learn and be interested in so many things everyday.

We recommend spending that mental power on topics you actually find interesting. Migration patterns of the Brazilian Horned Frog? Fascinating!

9. Quitting your job without knowing what you’re going to do

Your parents may kill us for saying this, but, psst – it’s okay not to have a plan. Really. Yes, quitting your job is relatively serious. So is paying rent. But what’s the worst that can happen? Couch surfing while you live the bohemian lifestyle? Big deal.

If you’re completely unhappy in your current place of employment, quit! Figure out what you want to do later. Try for a bunch of odd jobs. Quit your job and moved to a new city with no plans, and you may just be all the happier for it!

10. Moving to a new city with no plans

Live a little. Experience the country, or different countries. Everybody grows up wondering what it would be like to randomly move off to New York, L.A., Venice, or London. Take the leap and go for it!

Worst case scenario, you meet a few sketchy people and have to freelance write to get by. Isn’t the potential pay-off and enjoyment of a world of new experiences worth the risk? Wrecklessly, go!

Advertising

11. Dating that one person you know is terrible for you

You’re attracted to them for a reason. You know the situation won’t end well, but does that really mean you have to lose out on weeks or months of a good time?

Besides, it’s much easier (and more meaningful) to learn what you do not want in a significant other than it is to really conclude what you do want, day-in and day-out. Future you will be thankful.

12. Using free time to accomplish personal goals

You don’t have to feel bad about bailing on friends. You don’t have to get ahead on work. Maybe you simply want to read one book a week for a year, or build a business on the side, or visit every major city in the U.S.

People will say to use that time to boost your career. Nay! Pursue your goals! Achieve your dreams! And don’t look back.

13. Making a complete fool of yourself in public

Acting out probably isn’t going to be in anybody’s best interest. But making a complete fool of yourself teaches you one of two things: either you definitely need to never do anything like that again, or that it’s okay to come out of your shell a bit.

Sure, people will feel uncomfortable for a moment. But what if that one ridiculous moment is the key to relieving your social anxiety, enabling you to experience more things in life and achieve more of your goals without constantly worrying about failure? Would you say that’s worth a few laughs at your expense?

14. Taking an awful job

Something’s got to pay the bills, right? However admirable it may be to wait it out for your dream job, or for that one position you really deserve, sometimes you just need to take a lesser position.

Advertising

Pros? Because you enjoy your job less, you’ll find more distractions throughout your day (usually other friends also unhappy with their jobs), and you’ll be more inclined to pursue things you love outside the office. Those little moments of friendly distraction will turn into tight bonds, and that time you spent on your dreams will become invaluable.

15. Trying something new

You’re right, raw squid does sound like a terrible idea. So does working in an industry you have no prior experience in.

But even just one try, just one attempt at something new, can do more than simply broaden your horizon. It could be a crucial next step to how you live the rest of your life. Fear not, and try often.

16. Getting a pet

They cost money, poop everywhere, and take up way too much of your time and energy. But aren’t they just the cutest? Taking care of a pet actually teaches you a ton, and not just if you’re ready for kids or not.

It teaches you to be considerate of another, how to organize your time, and to get into a routine (like when your cat jumps in your bed at 6 am every morning, meowing in your face to feed it).

17. Doing something for yourself despite others telling you not to

Your friends are right. Doing that one thing will end badly. But maybe you need to go through that to understand what’s bad about it, or if it’s really a bad choice at all. You can tell someone not to write a book all day, but that it will only be a waste of time and a failure.

Listening to you doesn’t bring them closure and understanding. People have to “waste” that time and try their hardest before they can come to grips with their poor choices. And then, they will know how to better handle things in the future.

18. Trying to live a life separate from your family

We all have to go through this at least once. Yes, we love our families. But dang, are we sick of them! You have to prove to yourself that you can make a go of it on your own and not end up in a van down by the river.

You’re going to make a ton of mistakes, and it’s likely going to be really difficult. But if you don’t try to do things on your own, you’re never going to learn about yourself, your place in this world, and all the wonderful things you’re capable of.

More by this author

Kenneth Burke

Director of Marketing

Man Reading Kindle 14 Books To Help You Always Reach Your Goals Mittens Holding Coffee 12 Scientific Reasons Why You Should Drink Black Coffee Every Day 8 Steps to Ensure Success With Your New Website 8 Steps to Ensure Success With Your New Website Simple Steps Hiring Your First Employee 5 Simple Steps to Hiring Your First Employee Tips Help You Rent Dream Apartment 8 Tips to Help You Rent Your Dream Apartment

Trending in Communication

1 10 Powerful Ways to Influence People Positively 2 How To Be Happy Alone and Enjoy Life 3 What Is Self-Worth and How to Recognize Yours 4 How to Build Self Esteem (A Guide to Realize Your Hidden Power) 5 Why an Attitude of Gratitude Is Essential (And How to Develop It)

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on April 6, 2020

10 Powerful Ways to Influence People Positively

10 Powerful Ways to Influence People Positively

Most discussions on positively influencing others eventually touch on Dale Carnegie’s seminal work, How to Win Friends and Influence People. Written more than 83 years ago, the book touches on a core component of human interaction, building strong relationships. It is no wonder why.

Everything that we do hinges on our ability to connect with others and formulate deep relationships. You cannot sell a house, buy a house, advance in most careers, sell a product, pitch a story, teach a course, etc. without building healthy relationships. Managers get the best results from their teams, not through brute force, but to careful appeals to their sensibilities, occasional withdrawals from the reservoir of respect they’ve built. Using these tactics, they can influence others to excellence, to productivity, and to success.

Carnegie’s book is great. Of course, there are other resources too. Most of us have someone in our lives who positively influences us. The truth is positively influencing people is about centering the humanity of others. Chances are, you know someone who is really good at making others feel like stars. They can get you to do things that the average person cannot. Where the requests of others sound like fingernails on a chalkboard, the request from this special person sounds like music to your ears. You’re delighted to not only listen but also to oblige.

So how to influence people in a positive way? Read on for tips.

1. Be Authentic

To influence people in a positive way, be authentic. Rather than being a carbon copy of someone else’s version of authenticity, uncover what it is that makes you unique.

Discover your unique take on an issue and then live up to and honor that. Once of the reasons social media influencers are so powerful is that they have carved out a niche for themselves or taken a common issue and approached it from a novel or uncommon way. People instinctually appreciate people whose public persona matches their private values.

Contradictions bother us because we crave stability. When someone professes to be one way, but lives contrary to that profession, it signals that they are confused or untrustworthy and thereby, inauthentic. Neither of these combinations bode well for positively influencing others.

Advertising

2. Listen

Growing up, my father would tell me to listen to what others said. He told me if I listened carefully, I would know all I needed to know about a person’s character, desires and needs.

To positively influence others, you must listen to what is spoken and what is left unsaid. Therein lies the explanation for what people need in order to feel validated, supported and seen. If a person feels they are invisible, and unseen by their superiors, they are less likely to be positively influenced by that person.

Listening meets a person’s primary need of validation and acceptance.

Take a look at this guide on how to be a better listener: How to Practice Active Listening (A Step-By-Step Guide)

3. Become an Expert

Most people are predisposed to listen to, if not respect, authority. If you want to positively influence others, become an authority in the area in which you seek to lead others. Research and read everything you can about the given topic, and then look for opportunities to put your education into practice.

You can argue over opinions. You cannot argue, or it is unwise to argue, over facts and experts come with facts.

4. Lead with Story

From years of working in the public relations space, I know that personal narratives, testimonials and impact stories are incredibly powerful. But I never cease to be amazed with how effective a well-timed and told story can be.

Advertising

If you want to influence people, learn to tell stories. Your stories should be related to the issue or concept you are discussing. They should be an analogy or metaphor that explains your topic in ordinary terms and in vivid detail. To learn more about how to tell powerful stories, and the ethics of storytelling, take a look at this article: How To Tell An Interesting Story In 4 Simple Steps

5. Lead by Example

It is incredibly inspiring to watch passionate, talented people at work or play. One of the reasons a person who is not an athlete can be in awe of athletic prowess is because human nature appreciates the extraordinary. When we watch the Olympics, Olympic trials, gymnastic competitions, ice skating, and other competitive sports, we can recognize the effort of people who day in and day out give their all. C

ase in point: Simone Biles. The gymnast extraordinaire won her 6TH all-around title at the U.S. Gymnastics Championships after doing a triple double. She was the first woman to do so. Watching her gave me chills. Even non-gymnasts and non-competitive athletes can appreciate the talent required to pull off such a remarkable feat.

We celebrate remarkable accomplishments and believe that their example is proof that we too can accomplish something great, even if it isn’t qualifying for the Olympics. To influence people in a positive way, we must lead by example, lead with intention and execute with excellence.

6. Catch People Doing Good

A powerful way to influence people in a positive way is to catch people doing good. Instead of looking for problems, look for successes. Look for often overlooked, but critically important things that your peers, subordinates and managers do that make the work more effective and more enjoyable.

Once you catch people doing good, name and notice their contributions.

7. Be Effusive with Praise

It did not take me long to notice a remarkable trait of a former boss. He not only began and ended meetings with praise, but he peppered praise throughout the entire meeting. He found a way to celebrate the unique attributes and skills of his team members. He was able to quickly and accurately assess what people were doing well and then let them and their colleagues know.

Advertising

Meetings were not just an occasion to go through a “To Do” list, they were opportunities to celebrate accomplishments, no matter how small they are.

8. Be Kind Rather Than Right

I am going to level with you; this one is tough. It is easy to get caught up in a cycle of proving oneself. For people who lack confidence, or people who prioritize the opinions of others, being right is important. The validation that comes with being perceived as “right” feeds one’s ego. But in the quest to be “right,” we can hurt other people. Once we’ve hurt someone by being unkind, it is much harder to get them to listen to what we’re trying to influence them to do.

The antidote to influencing others via bullying is to prioritize kindness above rightness. You can be kind and still stand firm in your position. For instance, many people think that they need others to validate their experience. If a person does not see the situation you experienced in the way you see it, you get upset. But your experience is your experience.

If you and your friends go out to eat and you get food poisoning, you do not need your friends to agree that the food served at the restaurant was problematic for you. Your own experience of getting food poisoning is all the validation you need. Therefore, taking time to be right is essentially wasted and, if you were unkind in seeking validation for your food-poison experience, now you’ve really lost points.

9. Understand a Person’s Logical, Emotional and Cooperative Needs

The Center for Creative Leadership has argued that the best way to influence others is to appeal to their logical, emotional and cooperative needs. Their logical need is their rational and educational need. Their emotional need is the information that touches them in a deeply personal manner. The cooperative need is understanding the level of cooperation various individuals need and then appropriately offering it.

The trick with this system is to understand that different people need different things. For some people, a strong emotional appeal will outweigh logical explanations. For others, having an opportunity to collaborate will override emotional connection.

If you know your audience, you will know what they need in order to be positively influenced. If you have limited information about the people whom you are attempting to influence, you will be ineffective.

Advertising

10. Understand Your Lane

If you want to positively influence others, operate from your sphere of influence. Operate from your place of expertise. Leave everything else to others. Gone are the days when being a jack of all trades is celebrated.

Most people appreciate brands that understand their target audience and then deliver on what that audience wants. When you focus on what you are uniquely gifted and qualified to do, and then offer that gift to the people who need it, you are likely more effective. This effectiveness is attractive.

You cannot positively influence others if you are more preoccupied by what others do well versus what you do well.

Final Thoughts

Influencing people is about centering your humanity. If you want to influence others positively, focus on the way you communicate and improve the relationship with yourself first.

It’s hard to influence others if you’re still trying to figure out how to communicate with yourself.

More Tips About Making Influence

Featured photo credit: Wonderlane via unsplash.com

Read Next