The Unhelpful thought
I have constantly battled this thought in my mind about a mistake and its underlying opportunity. I’ve been one of the most conscious people at times and wondered if people are watching me; just to see if I make a mistake – talk about being narcissistic :D.
If they are, what are they thinking about me?
Will they make fun of me?
Will I think lose respect?
Does it mean that I will be considered stupid, dimwitted, careless…
………………….and plenty of other adjectives which I can think of.
The Helpful Thought
There have also been times where I have thought – well people have better things to do. I am not that important for them to worry about or being watchful all the time. These thoughts are further strengthened by another feeling –
If it is not that big for them, why is it big for me?
This is the first time I am doing it, stakes are low, let me do this anyway.
I will be better the next time – when it actually matters and the stakes are high
All through this, I will be slightly better and not make the silly mistakes because I am better trained. And that is a thought of relief.
I feel that I constantly circle back and forth between these two feelings and sometimes, I am not even sure which thought is running on my mind. I know that the second one helps me, but the first one is the subconscious cultural training. The second one is trained learning.
I suppose many of us go through these battles in our mind, especially when we are trying to learn a new skill, develop a new behaviour, tell ourselves that we are experts at something we have just started.
A better way to look at it?
Perhaps there is a better way to look at it –
accept that you are an amateur
accept that you are bound to make a few mistakes,
but also know that you are doing something incredible, you are defeating a behaviour which is holding you back,
own up to that simple mistake – more importantly, own up to the results of it.
You will not be an expert at the first go, just jump in, do it anyway. You will get better, you will do better -> This is the natural progression.
Loved this video below from Goalcast about mistakes and opportunities, maybe that will add some more thoughts to what I am trying to say. I would be wrong to say that this is what you have to do, I think it is always a thought in progress, our thoughts are always very precious. It is nice to know where they come from, whether they help us or not. And if they don’t, what can we do to make them serve us?