As a human, you are prone to committing mistakes. Life is not all green and as you try to find your way out and figure where you perfectly fit in life, you’d make uncountable mistakes. It a fact that you are not allergic to committing mistakes. Unfortunately, people fall back when they realize they’ve made a mistake. The situation should be different to benefit from the saying “Experience is the best teacher”.
Yes, I always tell my readers at doforsuccess.com that you can only learn after making mistakes. In the reality, you learn averagely nothing when you continuously win. Life is picking from your experiences either to make it better or learn from your mistakes.
Therefore, I’m honored to share with you 4 things you need to do after making a mistake. But first I need to tell you this;
A mistake is valuable if you do four things with it: recognize it, admit it, learn from it, forget it.
This quote from Coach Wooden is one of my favorites because it summarizes and gives instruction to some of his key ideas regarding how to deal with mistakes:
1. Recognize it.
Failure is not fatal, but failure to change might be.
2. Admit it.
You may make mistakes, but you are not a failure until you start blaming someone else.
3. Learn from it.
It’s always about focusing not on the mistakes, but on the lessons learned from them.
Never require repeated criticism for the same mistake.
4. Forget it.
Don’t let yesterday take up too much of today.
Don’t make a second mistake because you’re thinking about the first.
John Wooden took on his first coaching assignment in 1933. The opportunity was in Dayton, Kentucky, for the Dayton High School Green Devils football team.
In his book My Personal Best with Steve Jamison, Coach described that experience:
“The Green Devils football team had a big lumbering lineman who bullied other classmates and even teammates; he was the kind of player who did only as much as he wanted to do and no more. On a sweltering Kentucky afternoon during the first week of football practice, this young man decided he’d had enough of my whistleblowing, directions, and drills. When I told him to get back to work, he challenged me. He stuck his chin right in my face and snarled, ‘You’re not man enough to make me do it.’ The whole team was watching us. I responded emotionally and without thinking, and I am very ashamed of what happened next—a brief but physical altercation. It was terrible behavior from someone trying hard to follow the examples of my coaching mentors. Even more, it went against my father’s teaching. One of his favorite quotes was from Abraham Lincoln: ‘Nothing is stronger than gentleness.’
“Now, as a brand-new coach—two weeks into the job—I had quickly lost my temper and stooped to violence. It troubled me very deeply. These days I’d be fired, rightfully, but on that hot humid afternoon, we just moved on and continued the practice. I quickly came to understand I wasn’t a good football coach. The stubborn lineman, however, was not the reason, and I asked my predecessor, Willard Bass, to come back. As the weeks went along, I heard through the grapevine that whenever one of them gave him any trouble, Coach Bass would warn sternly, ‘Please don’t make me tell Johnny Wooden about this.’ He was kidding, of course, but I didn’t think it was very funny.”
Seems like Coach Wooden followed his own advice regarding this mistake. He recognized it, admitted it, learned from it and moved forward.