It was one of those days where I had a full to-do list. One of the items was taking my son to baseball practice which happened to be right when I would be preparing dinner. As time was drawing nigh, I cooked until the last possible minute.
I yelled through the house telling my son, “let’s go.” I grabbed my purse, changed my shoes, and jumped in the car to speed down the road to get him there on time. As I got out of the car, I looked down, and to my shock and horror, I had on two different shoes! They were blatantly, obviously wrong, but I never looked down to check.
OH THE HORROR!
I had two options: I could fret about this and wonder “what is everyone thinking about me?” or I could just roll with the punches and laugh it off! I know this isn’t a serious matter, but I sure wanted to talk bad about myself and consume myself with what everyone was thinking. Then I started thinking…
How often do little mess-ups like this happen? Maybe you didn’t leave the house with two different shoes, but maybe you forgot a friend’s birthday. Or maybe you forgot to include a co-worker on an email. You slip up in a presentation and freeze for a second. Your boss asks a question for which you don’t know the answer. You gain a couple of pounds over the holidays and you think everyone can tell. You forgot your towel so you can’t go to the gym before going to work! You forgot to check your bank balance or transfer funds to your account before swiping your debit card and you didn’t have enough money to pay for your meal!
This list goes on and on.
Then we dwell on it forever and ever. Thinking we are the worst person ever because we made a mistake. Now don’t get me wrong, there are some mistakes that are costly; but a majority of the mistakes we make are not and don’t deserve the punishment we put ourselves through!
Life happens. We make mistakes, but we don’t need to lose sleep or worry about it!
A question to ask yourself is, “Will I care about—or even remember—this in six months’ time?”
If something is worrying you right now, stop and think: It’s November! Will today’s concern matter in May?
Probably not! It will be a blip in your memory that you probably won’t remember no matter how hard you try!! I am willing to bet that you cannot remember what you were worrying about six months ago on this exact date? I can’t. I was probably at work, but the details are sketchy! So if I can’t remember what I did six months ago, why worry about this small mistake now?
If we can’t remember, it begs the question of what does matter? What should I focus on instead of the mistake? How about the following:
Your spiritual life.
Your closest relationships.
Your financial stewardship.
These things count. Invest in them rather than worry about a minor mistake you made.
Most of our minor mistakes can benefit us by teaching us something. There is no such thing as a life without mistakes, so take something useful from each mistake. Learn from it and pass the lesson on to someone else. Build the bridge for someone else to cross over.
If you messed up a presentation, spend 10 more minutes prepping next time. If you were late to a meeting, leave 10-15 minutes earlier. If you burned dinner, have some lunch meat in the fridge to make sandwiches! And by all means, if you walked out of the house with mismatched shoes on, next time look down at your feet before getting in the car!!
And hey—if you don’t, that’s OK too.
Life is not about avoiding mistakes. It’s about learning to let go of the stress and nonsense we feed ourselves about our worth when life does not go 100 percent according to plan. Stop letting that movie play in your head. Most people have moved on and never gave it another thought; you should do the same!
As we are journeying to our best selves, we will make mistakes. However, those mistakes will not define us and they don’t devalue us! It makes us human and relatable!
Don’t sweat the small stuff. Stop stressing about the next thing and how you will do. Just Do It! Learn from your mistakes!! Life is too short to sweat the small stuff!
In case you were wondering what I did regarding my shoes; I decided to take a picture of it and send it to a couple of my friends. We had a good laugh!! Now, I always look down to make sure my shoes match!
Laugh about it! Laughter is good for the soul!
Spicing Up Your Soul