I make mistakes. Many of them. I enjoy making mistakes.
I make mistakes in my decisions and I make mistakes evaluating the information I have to make my decisions. Mistakes come when I am influenced by the wrong source, I make mistakes choosing sources. I make the mistake of not thinking deeply enough on things and then the mistake of thinking I did. I make the mistake of overestimating my skills in many things and underestimate my propensity to overestimate. Without taking this further, assume I make many different mistakes.
But like I said, I enjoy them.
I of course can't aim to make mistakes because if I aim for and get a mistake, it is technically a success. Mistakes have to be made when attempting to aim for a success. The mistake must be somewhat a surprise, an unexpected result.
The reason that I like making mistakes isn't just the invaluable lessons that come with them, the better decision making for the future or the closing in on success. It is that when I make mistakes I am trying. I am out of my comfort zone and treading areas where I do not have the answers, do not have the necessary skills. It means I am looking to improve. Reach for my potential.
For much of my life I hid myself away. I am not saying that I lived a hermit's life, I am saying that I usually did not attempt my all. It started young, perhaps even before school where I never pushed myself to the limits. At primary school I did the same and never aimed for far above average. I succeeded.
I didn't ever want to stand out. I am not saying that I would have been exceptional at anything but in some things, I did have some talent yet consistently held back. I never wanted to make myself a target. I was already a big enough target because of my background.
In high school it continued, I continually downplayed myself in a hundred different ways. I would hold back in classes I could excel at, avoided sports I knew I had skills in and defer to those that exerted power over me, even when I knew I had more than their measure.
When I began work life I consistently avoided taking leadership opportunities yet inside I knew I could have. In situations that called for decisiveness, decision and action had already been thought through and planned in my head yet, I took a step back and let someone else act instead. I played follow the leader well.
I could say it was humility, justify it as courtesy or any number of other excuses. Because they are excuses. I know what it was. I knew it then and I know it now. I held back out of fear. There may have been many reasons to hold back but only one really matters.
Fear that I would try my best, and still fail.
It took me a long time to face them. A long time to deconstruct myself enough to remove the many layers of fear from the depths within. It took detailed study, long reflection and many attempts to break habits and patterns to which I had long adhered. It took a lot of failure.
I remember a big step almost ten years ago. Pressing 'publish' on my first post. Opening myself up to ridicule and judgement. Putting myself out there for the world to see. And not caring of the result. It felt amazing. Freeing.
Four years ago I started my business. Another massive step and one that took all of my will to make. I was far from comfortable already, and this was risking even that poor position. Now, I am only slightly better off and my workload has tripled. Still, it was one of the best decisions I have ever made. Freedom of work.
For me, facing my fears hasn't made life easier, it has made it infinitely harder. Freeing myself from the fear that held me back means that now I am not held back at all. Where do I go, what do I do? The world is unlimited potential and there are so many things I want to explore, so much I want to rip apart and see what makes it tick and the responsibility to do so is mine alone.
No excuses left.
One fear still remains. The fear of not enough time. The only way I can hold this back is to stay in the eternal now. Time cannot terrorize eternity.
So, this is why I don't mind making mistakes because each mistake is a further nail in the coffin of my fear. A burying of who I pretended to be, the lie I lived. It is proof that the demons of my past have not caught up to me yet, that I have taken responsibility for myself and become my own master, and whatever limited value I have to offer the world, I will give it my all.
You may get a taste of this through my posts. These are not about me telling what I think, they are me exploring further and asking for help to look. I think we could do great things together, make a brighter future for us all.
The future. This is where I have started again to fear.
When my daughter was born and for the first time in a while, a new fear crept in to settle in the recesses of my mind. As a parent I am going to make many mistakes. That does not scare me. I am going to do accidental damage while trying to do what is right. I accept that. There are going to be times she cries and screams with all her might and tells me how much she hates me. I can take it.
The fear I have is, what if she is like me? What if she spends her life hiding, never realizing, never discovering who she really is? The responsibility is hers but is that a parenting failure I can accept from myself?
Therefore, each day I will attempt again and again, try and fail countless times no doubt. I will do my absolute best to demonstrate that what lies inside her, what lies in us all, is fearlessness.
[ a Steem original ]