The Freedom To Make Mistakes
– Mahatma Gandhi
What Is Freedom?
The reason I am picking this quote today is cos of the most recent quote I came across from the most famous TV Series game of thrones where Mance Rayder says
“The Freedom To Make My Own Mistakes Is All I Ever Wanted”
Quite catchy isn’t it?
I thought so too :).
Well, it might be a different context in which Gandhi uttered this quote or Mance Rayder does. But we do focus on freedom in an internal form here. The freedom which we give ourselves, the freedom to separate ourselves from the society and the demands of the environment around us, the freedom to embrace the rebel within us, the freedom to think, feel and experience our own thoughts. I don’t want to go ahead and talk in a metaphysical manner or a spiritual manner here, that is not our forte. But we do look at the everyday aspect of our life, the everyday shackles we impose on ourselves cos we think that the society or people around us might not approve.
Waiting For Others To Approve Us
I have been there, where I have tried to do things to gain the approval of the society. But the funny thing about society is, not matter what you do, you are always wrong. Because you see, the society consists of people like you and me. You might be a fair and just person, but I am a bit of a nut case, I want something else to satisfy my needs and there is someone else whose needs are completely different as well. At some level, we all have to accept that trying to please everyone, trying to be perfect for the society and the people around us is perhaps one of the worst standards you and I can have.
The simplest truth is that there is no pleasing everyone. There will be people who will be displeased with you, some will be disappointed and some might even be disgusted. But you stand for the values of your life and no one else. You stand for what your heart and gut says, you stand up for the definition of who you are – not the definition given to you by the society or someone else, but for the definition you created for yourself.
The Freedom To Make Mistakes
True! When Gandhi said – “Freedom to make mistakes”, he probably meant it for the nation and the social scene in general. But the quote is valid even today. We all need that freedom to make mistakes. Not that anyone else is holding us a prisoner, but think a little deeper – who is holding you back?
- Is it the society?
- Peer Group?
Is it them who is holding you back or is it your perception of them?
Most times we tend to make the issue bigger than it is. As Mark Twain said –
“I’ve experienced many terrible things in my life, a few of which actually happened.” – Mark Twain
And we do it unconsciously. So, it is not the society or the people around us who can set us free. It is all us, it is within us to set ourselves free, it is within ourselves to allow us to make mistakes. It is within us not to beat ourselves down when we screw up something. But to stand up and say, let bygones be bygones and look at what we can do to fix it. We are not recommending being irresponsible or escaping your responsibilities. We are asking you to look at the solution than trying to feel bad about the problem.
The more you punish yourself for a mistake, the worse you feel cos you are not providing yourself an escape route. There is no stress free route here. You need to create yourself these patterns. You need to provide yourself opportunities and train yourselves to know that it is not a big deal to make mistakes and mistakes do happen and it really is okay as long as we are willing to work on them.
That is what we meant by the freedom to make mistakes in life. Mistakes are not all bad, they are here to lead us somewhere, somewhere good. Let them have that opportunity.
This was our thought for the day. Stay tuned in for more.
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