What do you do when you f*ck up?

Over the past few days, I’ve dropped the ball a few times so I had couple self-talks about a how I’m an idiot and how I should have known better.

During one such incident, a thought occurred to me.

Negativity doesn’t help.

This is very basic, I know, but it helped me to do something interesting.

As I realized this, I thought: if negativity doesn’t help, what does?

And after a moment, I came to an answer. Or, rather a question:

What can I learn from this?

It made me pause. And in that moment, the question lifted me up from the negative state and made me think about the lessons I could draw. It reframed my mistakes and offered me a new, fresh perspective.

I grabbed my laptop, put down the question, and started writing. Soon, I had half a dozen points about what I can do differently next time.

And the best thing? No more negativity.

I embraced the failure and made it a learning experience. My mind was calm.

It also made me think of my favorite little book Striking Thoughts, which is a collection of Bruce Lee’s writing. Here are a few examples from it:

Learn to walk on .— Why add the tension of emotion/thought to a situation which is illusion, to the extent that it is real, of a passing moment (in any event, the result of previous causes)? Do what seems wise to be done, forget it, and walk on. Walk on and see a new view.
Admitting mistakes. — Mistakes are always forgivable, if one has the courage to admit them.
Mistakes as educators. — When I have listened to my mistakes, I have grown. - Bruce Lee

So, when something goes wrong, remember that this question can help you:

What can I learn from this?

Coffee fuels my creative life. Buy me one, kind stranger?
All articles