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High Achievers Are the Ones Who Make the Most Mistakes

High Achievers Are the Ones Who Make the Most Mistakes

The impact mistakes have had on most people’s lives is tremendous.

At school, you were taught to answer questions with model answers. At home, you were taught to be disciplined, have good manners and follow social etiquette. And at work, you’ve become accustomed to a constant expectation that you operate in a mistake-free manner!

The problem with all the above scenarios is that they punish mistakes. A teacher deducts marks for a wrong answer – a supervisor scolds people for failing to take the right action.

It’s no surprise, then, that from a very young age, people have been made to feel bad about making mistakes. Some have even felt like a complete failure. This constant negative feedback leads to most people desperately trying to live their lives without making any mistakes. It can actually become a compulsion. It may even lead to them trying to hide or lie about their mistakes.

But there is more to making mistakes than most have been led to believe.

The Unexpected Positive Side of Being Wrong

The truth is, by forever seeking to avoid mistakes – we actually end up making more mistakes!

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It’s time to start looking at mistakes from a different perspective. They aren’t the monster they’ve been made out to be. They’ve the remarkable ability to help bring about powerful and rapid personal growth.

If you try to avoid mistakes, then you’ll also be missing opportunities to experience something different from what you planned or expected. Imagine that you miss a connecting flight while traveling to an exotic location. By missing the flight, you are forced to stay for 24 hours in a destination that you’d never been to before. To your surprise, though, you find that the nearest city to the airport is picturesque, cosmopolitan and friendly.  In fact, during your time there – you begin to fall in love with everything the city has to offer. When you finally have to leave the city to go back to the airport, you feel genuinely sad. The city captivates your interest and warms your heart.

Clearly, if you hadn’t missed your flight, you would’ve never visited the city – and never discovered your immediate liking for it.

Life can be like that. Mistakes can lead to adventures and opportunities. And beyond that, mistakes can help you to understand how to make better decisions in future situations.

Making Mistakes Does Not Fend off Success, Avoiding Them Does

Unsuccessful people put the bulk of their focus and energy on avoiding mistakes, whereas successful people put the bulk of their focus and energy on making continual attempts at reaching their goals.

Jim Carrey, on his debut comic stand-up at a club called Yuk Yuk’s in Toronto, he was booed off stage. However, he didn’t let this break him. Instead, he used the experience as a wake up call to improve his performance. This wasn’t the only set back he endured. When auditioning for the Saturday Night Live 1980-81 season, he failed to land the part.[1] Again, he didn’t let this destroy his confidence or ambition, but instead he kept on pursing his dreams until he finally broke through to the mainstream in 1994 with the blockbuster movie “Ace Ventura: Pet Detective.”

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    Jim Carrey wasn’t so successful as a comic stand up at the very beginning.

    And then there is Michael Jordan. His profile on NBA’s website describes him as “the greatest basketball player of all time.”[2] And this is how most people think of him. However, Jordan himself said that:

    “I have missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I have lost almost 300 games. On 26 occasions I have been entrusted to take the game winning shot, and I missed. I have failed over and over and over again in my life.”

    But he clarified this statement by adding some vital information: “And that is why I succeed.

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      Each attempt they made was open to mistakes. With more attempts made, the more feedback they received, and the more chances they gained to do better.

      So, if you really want to avoid mistakes – attempt nothing and take no risks. Your record may remain clean, you’ll make few mistakes, but you’ll also have few achievements to write home about. In other words, avoiding mistakes is the easiest way to become and stay unsuccessful.

      From Making Mistakes to Mastering Mistakes

      Failed attempts are only futile if you don’t learn from them.

      Let’s say that you expect that mistakes will happen after you’ve made a choice. This is natural. You’re aware that choices come with risks, and risks can lead to mistakes. However, if you allow the same mistakes to occur time and time again, then you’re not learning or evolving – but instead are stuck in a rut. Albert Einstein said it well:

      “The definition of insanity is repeating the same mistakes over and over again and expecting different results.”

      A much better approach, is to analyze your mistakes, and to see if you can work out how to avoid them in the future. Put another way, make every attempt count and learn from it. By doing this, you’ll quickly overcome foolish mistakes, and begin to make real progress in your life.

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      As a hard-hitting example for you to think about, if you know that drunk driving can kill, and you still do it because you think it’s about “making more attempts and mistakes,” that’s a foolish act – not an attempt that will help you grow.

      On the other hand, if you plan a business project with some risky ideas, but expect there will be mistakes, then even if these efforts turn out to be unsuccessful, you’ll learn from them.

      A mistake is just a mis-take, start over by learning from your last mis-take.

      Making mistakes doesn’t equal failure. Not making any, however, will mean that you miss out on tons of attempts and learning opportunities. This guarantees failure.

      Be brave, be bold, and be prepared to make mistakes.

      Reference

      More by this author

      Leon Ho

      Founder & CEO of Lifehack

      10 Things High Achievers Do to Attain Greatness Why Am I So Tired Even After Rest? How To Be Successful In Life? 13 Tips From The Most Successful People Forget Learning How to Multitask: Boost Productivity 10X More with Focus The Lifehack Show Episode 9: Using Absorbent Learning to Boost Your Knowledge

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      Last Updated on October 16, 2019

      What Is the Purpose of Life and What Should You Live For?

      What Is the Purpose of Life and What Should You Live For?

      In society today, knowing your purpose of life and what you should live for has become the major criteria for measuring how happy your life is. There is a lot of pressure to know your purpose in life, becuase if you don’t know, then the chances of you living a fulfiling and happy life are nil.

      This is absolute rubbish.

      Ralph Emerson’s states in his quote that our purpose in life has nothing to do with happiness but more to do with how well we lived our lives.

      “The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”

      That is the secret recipe to living a happy and fulfilling life.

      A Story About My Friend John

      My best friend John suddenly passed away a few weeks ago. John was a person who lived a purposeful life that was centred on his commitment and love for his family and serving others.

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      John did not seek out his purpose in life. He didn’t read personal development books on how to find your life purpose and he never asked the question “what should I live for?” He just knew what gave him joy and that was to serve his family and the people who were in his life.

      John was that person that Ralph Emerson was referring to in his quote: a man who showed compassion and kindness and who lived a full life with purpose and commitment.

      John was not a famous man who had achieved world recognition for his amazing feats. He was my long-time friend, a truly great man who to me lived his life purpose to the fullest.

      Not all of us are like John who just knew what his purpose in life was and then just did it. Some of us need guidance as to how we can start this journey…

      3 Steps To Finding Your Life Purpose

      Here are 3 very simple steps that if you follow will help you to attain purpose and fulfilment in life.

      1. Disconnect from Social Media

      With social media, we are relentlessly exposed to thousands of people who present a life where they seem to be living incredibly fulfilled and successful lives with purpose.

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      It seems to be for many people that figuring out your life purpose today is complicated and a drawn out process that can take forever. This is in fact not true at all.

      On social media, you only see the fabulous and fun parts of peoples lives, you do not see their true life that can be as challenging and as complicated as yours. No one escapes the realities of life – those life curveballs that come from nowhere.

      If you are comparing your quality of life and your happiness with those people on social media, then you need to stop. You need to find your own measures of success as to what a fulfilled happy life means to you.

      Social Media will not give you what you are seeking when it comes to finding what it is that will bring joy to your life.

      When you are consistently experiencing joy in your life, you are living a purposeful life. You know what the kind of life you want to live that is important to you. Using other peoples experiences of joy on social media is not best way for you to determine your life purpose.

      2. Ask These 3 Key Questions to Define Your Life Purpose

      To start your journey to figuring out your purpose in life ask yourself these 3 key questions:

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      • What is the legacy that I want to leave behind?
      • What will people say about me when I have gone?
      • What difference have I made to other peoples lives?

      The answers to these 3 questions will help you determine your purpose in life.

      Once you have defined these answers, the next step is for you is to take action and consistently demonstrate those qualities you believe are important for you to attain living a life with purpose and joy.

      3. Focus on the Specific Actions That Bring You Joy

      “You do not write your life with words. . . You write it with actions. What you think is not important. It is only important what you do” — Patrick Ness

      Discovering your purpose in life and what you should live for is the same for everyone in the world – rich or poor. Everyone has the opportunity to live life to the fullest. It is not complex, difficult or out of your reach.

      Finding your life purpose is very achievable. All you have to do is decide what it is that living a fulfilled happy life means to you and then you go do it. Go and be kind to others and live your life the best way you can every day.

      Acts of kindness, generosity, gratitude and love are the core actions of living a life with purpose. If you focus on these actions on a daily basis, you will be living your life with purpose. It is at this point that the feelings of happiness fill your life.

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      The more you do for others, the more happy you will be.

      A Word of Warning

      When you are living your life with purpose, it does not mean that you will transform into living the life of an angel.

      Remember your reality – you will still have your faults, make huge mistakes, fail and have to navigate your way through the challenges that life throws at you.

      However, living a life with purpose and commitment builds your resilience and enables you to deal with life challenges from a place of strength and certainty.

      Your power of choice is the only thing that you have that enables you to live a life with purpose and joy. My friend John knew how to use his power of choice to the fullest. He chose to live a life with purpose and he knew what he had to do to bring joy into his life and to those people he loved – a very simple recipe to living life to the fullest.

      The journey to knowing your life purpose and living your life purpose is within your reach. You are the only person who can do it and you have control over how you want to live your life.

      Remember that nobody else does – it is all down to you. I suggest that you go do it now!

      More About Finding Your True Purpose

      Featured photo credit: Timothy Paul Smith via unsplash.com

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