How to Use Your Mistake to Set A Goal in Your Life

I have a friend and we will call her Jenny (not her real name). She was my office mate. She messaged me one day and asked if I can publish one of her poems on our campaign website. I said I am honoured to. She sent me a very beautiful poem though it contains sad lines. I was carried away that I read all of it until the end. I was about to publish it online when I remember to check for plagiarism. The result was 100% plagiarised. I was disappointed. I didn’t let her know that I ignored her entry. The next week, she asked me why it wasn’t on the website, I said straight to her face that she copied it from another poet and it’s illegal. She was startled yet able to regain herself immediately and told me she will give another shot. I said, okay. However, she sent another copied content three more times. What are our mistakes? What are the lessons here?

You are smart enough to think that your mistake is not just an experience in the past, but you learned from it, forgave those who caused you pain, moved on, and that’s it. You think it must stop there and do what’s more important. You are definitely correct, we must forgive and forget.

From this episode I had and from other else, there’s this one important thing we miss. Yes, we forgive, learn, and carry on. Forgetting all that happened may lighten your burden BUT don’t overlook the mistake you’ve done. We can use it to align with the other goals as we spend the days of what’s left of us. Here’s what I’m talking about:

Your Mistake

I am not talking about all of your mistakes. Only take that ONE particular repetitive mistake you had done for the past year (or years if you may). The one that slapped your face many times but you can’t stop making the same.

What About It

Once you have that ONE mistake I’m talking about, answer the following questions and be specific and HONEST as much as possible:

  1. What happened before you first made that mistake?
  2. How did you do it?
  3. After that, have you promised yourself not to do it again?
  4. What did happen that you made the same mistake twice?
  5. For the second time, have you promised not to commit the same mistake?

The Goal

At this point, you MUST be DETERMINED not to do that same mistake. If you don’t have the will yet, you are free to go back anytime on this part and continue setting your goal. Take a moment and think about this. This is not a joke and this is not about me at all. This is about YOU! If you lie to yourself, it’s you-you’re fooling at. It’s a good habit to be true to yourself.

If you’re reading this part, I assume you already decided to seriously set a goal. You see, you need to answer the following questions to determine ONE life-changing goal that can do pretty big on your personal growth.

  1. Are you going to dodge making that stupid the same mistake again?
  2. Will you have something to lose if you stop doing it?
  3. Is there something you can benefit from saving yourself from this God-knows-what-it-is mistake?
  4. What are you going to do next? (This is a very important question because you will figure out your future self. This is not necessarily connected to the mistake you made, but to the next level of self-awareness you just learned.)

Important Note

After doing this, have a quiet time with yourself and reflect on your previous year journeys. Have a habit of ending those with positive thoughts. Don’t ever forget to celebrate what you have accomplished and try not to ask why those bad things happened to you. Enjoy your life journey!