The Linda B James Blog

4 Steps To Turn Mistakes Into Motivators

Apr 17, 2015 1:54:00 AM / by Linda B James 
Many times a wakeup call can be disguised as a mistake.”  Linda B James


‘’Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.”

Are you still reading?

I thought so.

Who is without flaws?  

We all are different when it comes to a number of things like gender, age, political affiliation, social economic status, sexual orientation and ethnicity.  But, in several ways we are all the same. 

Let me explain... we are all inevitable members of the "I can’t believe I did something sooo stupid" club.  Yes, I'm even talking about those cringe-worthy, "slip-of-the-tongue" moments you will take to your grave.  We involuntarily became members, the moment we said or did something that we couldn’t take back. We have all earned the right to wear the “I put my foot in my mouth crown of the day."  The memories that accompany the crown include: an awkward facial expression, a pregnant pause and that deafening inner voice that asks, "did I really say/do that?’’  To our dismay, there is no reversing the clock.  The damage has been done. In a lot of cases, the damage cannot be undone. 

So how do you rationalize the most humiliating, gut-wrenching and inexcusable mistakes?

4 steps to turn mistakes into motivators:

  1. Find The "Message In The Mess" - Search for the silver lining.  Ask yourself important questions and search deep inside to find the answers. Mistakes leave clues to help create a better you.  Ask yourself these questions: Did any good come out of this?  Did I learn what not to say/do?  How could I said it/do it better?  What are better questions to ask in the future?  Do I need more time to think before I speak?

  2. Do Damage Control - Think deeply, can you correct or minimize the gaffe by: correcting the error, sincerely apologizing, finding someone to speak on your behalf, asking for more time, speaking with the ‘’powers that be ‘’or carefully explaining your version of the story.

  3. Be Honest With Yourself - Keep things in perspective and review the issue objectively. Be aware of self-justification: it can be a copout.  Have the courage to admit when you are wrong.  Okay, I get it, maybe you want to preserve your dignity.  You might not want to admit your wrongdoings to anyone else.  At least admit them to yourself.

  4. Keep A "Motivational Mistakes" Journal - Be aware of the steps you take in life.  Some missteps can be costly.  Start a journal. List your errors, what you have learned and how to avoid making the same problemin the future.

We must learn to embrace mistakes; mistakes are motivators.  They are an inevitable part of life.  It is natural to feel dejected when we make mistakes.  Here's the kicker -- never allow them to keep you down in the dumps.  Master the "art of looking up" when you are down.

To Your Success,


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Topics: Business & Career Success, Personal Growth, Mental Toughness

Linda B James

Written by Linda B James

Radio/TV personality, speaker, media coach and lifestyle expert. Known as The Lady With The Moves and the author of the Simple Treasures series.