We’re all human, and therefore fallible. Nevertheless, people are exceedingly reluctant to admit to making mistakes. Pride and fear of looking bad or losing face often prevent us from admitting our screw-ups, even though the most successful among us have usually experienced more failures than everybody else. Henry Ford famously said that “failure is the opportunity to begin again, more intelligently.”
Glossing over mistakes or making excuses for errors we’ve made is self-destructive. When we run from or try to hide the mistakes we’ve made, deep down it undermines our personal confidence, which is the foundation upon which success is built. Most people focus way too much time trying to promote their strengths and not nearly enough time trying to understand how and why they fail. The truth is that you can’t get better and improve unless you acknowledge your failures and shortcomings. You also can’t be an effective leader unless you hold yourself accountable first, which necessitates owning up to personal blunders. Poor decisions teach us valuable lessons and give us perspective. When we admit a mistake, it may seem like we’re taking a step backward, but in reality, all we’re really doing is admitting that we’re smarter and wiser.
Onward and upward!
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