I believe that there are many people in life that don’t succeed because they hold their past mistakes against themselves or they allow others to hold their mistakes against them. Opportunity comes and they focus on their failures instead of their successes.
The truth is that we all make mistakes in our lives, there is not one single person on this planet that can claim they are perfect. I know that people don’t like to forget your mistakes, but one thing I do know is God forgets them and His opinion is the only one that matters.
If we had to be perfect in order to become great then nobody would ever have success. In fact, I believe that often times it is the mistakes in our lives that give us the biggest education, the most to offer and the greatest capacity to love.
Today I was thinking back to a mistake I made 31 years ago because I happened along a music video. I won’t go into great detail because I don’t want people reminding me of my mistakes. But my high school had won a concert from MTV and my girlfriends and I were of the wilder side. Let’s just say that particular band I am sure had never met a bunch of girls like us and I am sure never again. If there was a book ever written I am SURE we would be in it. I can actually think back now and laugh about it, but I certainly learned too.
See we all have times in our lives when we weren’t as educated, wise or intelligent. It is only because of those experiences that I can help young women to understand how they should approach life (and bands haha). One of my old friends told me she still has photos of what I used to look like back then and thought about putting them on the internet to show “before and after”. I'm thankful she hasn’t but if she ever did, I will tell you that I am not my mistakes and I certainly am not who I used to be.
Today I want to give you a four things you can do if you find yourself in a place where you are allowing your mistakes to hold you back.
- Learn from it. So many times in life we experience something, make a bad decision, make a mistake and instead of learning from it and becoming a stronger, smarter, a more educated individual we will go the extreme and just never try again. That is just a castle of failure because not trying is guaranteed failure. Trying and learning is growth. Choose to make your mistakes learning experiences because they are a part of a healthy life.
- Your past doesn't determine your future. Just because you made certain wrong decisions in the past, made a mistake or lost in some way doesn't mean you are your mistakes. Just because you lost doesn't mean your a loser. Realize that everyone loses and everyone, yes every single person that breaths makes mistakes. But just because we make them once doesn't mean we have to repeat them.
- Don't focus on your shortcomings. If I could tell myself this at a young age I would go back in time and do so. So many times we focus on what we can't do because people like to remind us of what we can't do. Others like to remind you of where you are weak. There aren't many people that choose to point out others greatness and you have to resolve to focus on what you do well because nobody will do that for you.
- Forgive yourself. We talk a lot about forgiving others and I believe that is of utmost importance. But sometimes we forget to forgive ourselves. We want to hold ourselves to the fire, rehearse and curse it. But probably the best thing you can do for yourself is to confess you are an imperfect human being and that you are allowed to make mistakes. You are allowed not to be perfect so forgive yourself.
Great success takes a great amount of failure. Being a great person takes first being very imperfect. Everyone starts in the same exact place without the knowledge that they now have. We are all born not knowing a whole lot in fact, if you think of a baby. I have heard it said, those that have been forgiven much love much. Why? Because they know what it is like to be imperfect and to be loved anyway. Maybe just maybe that is a very great revelation we can bring to our own relationships to allow them to become deeper. Maybe forgiveness can bring great love for ourselves and those in our lives we choose to forgive.
I believe that forgiveness is the very essence of acceptance and if we are to have wonderful relationships in our lives, whether that be friendship or romantic, acceptance is key to building something that lasts. Forgiveness may in fact be the key ingredient that causes love to grow. I have had the same best friend for 40 years and I can honestly say we are still friends simply because we forgive and accept each other. May we strive for this even in our relationship with ourselves.
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