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Making Mistakes, Average Versus Brilliant People

Today, I discovered something that I think is quite interesting and worth sharing.

When smart people make mistakes, the way they handle it is in such a way that it doesn’t seem like it’s a real mistake!  It’s almost like it’s just another step in the process.  In life, we all make mistakes, even thoughs that are considered the brilliant ones. 

When normal people make mistakes, they fill like they are broken or did something bad.  They really didn’t, but they feel like they are lesser in some way than the rest of the crowd.

But today, I worked with people who are very brilliant and when they make mistakes, they don’t feel the same way.  Instead they blow it off like it was nothing and keep going on as normal, without even flinching.  Even after making mistake after mistake, they kept on their path.  Their persistence is very impressive.

So what caused the average person to think so differently about their mistakes?  Is it the way that they were raised?  Perhaps it was an intellectual bully or even a cruel teacher that may have ridiculed them while they were growing up.  Or could it be that they learned such behavior from the movies, TV or even radio show…

So how do we correct this behavior to have a more productive and pleasant life? 

I don’t think it’s an easy thing to overcome, but perhaps if we start out small, perhaps trying to learn something new everyday or once a week.  Later try to develep a skill or hobby.  The goal is to keep growing, even in the face of mistakes…



22 Responses to Making Mistakes, Average Versus Brilliant People

  1. A surefire way to never make mistakes is to never do anything.
    I generally try to look at the consequences and count myself lucky they weren’t worse.

  2. The attitude towards failure is what’s important. If you vow never to do something because you failed once, then you’ve truly failed.

  3. I am so entirely average! I really beat myself up over mistakes, that is if they affect other people. I can handle mistakes that just affect me, but I never want my blunder to get in the way of others.

    I have no idea why, but I am incredibly hard on myself. I was raised with a lot of guilt, so that probably has something to do with it.

    • I think it is how one was raised. If you were overly chastised when you made mistakes as a child (as was I), you learn to feel stupid and guilty about mistakes.

      Then later you read about all the great inventors that made mistakes over and over again. The you see your peers make mistakes over and over again. Then one day you wake up and realize that making mistakes is an important part of learning.

      Sad it took me so long to get over the guilt. Now I fake it, acting like my mistakes weren’t that important and just try to fix them, but in a positive attitude. It seems like sometimes people will cut you some slack if you don’t feel guilt about it and try to fix it in a constructive way.

  4. What can you learn from those mistakes? Thomas Edison said, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Live with this attitude and you will be brilliant.

  5. If you change your participants to successful and unsuccessful, the results would be the same. Successful people recognize there will be errors or mistakes and they just fix them and continue to the goal. Unsuccessful people let mistakes, hurdles or problems prevent them from success.

    • yep, that’s the problems with mistakes, how people handle them.

      Guilt-free people realize that it’s just part of life, and continue to work at the issue.

      Guilt-filled people shy away from the area that they made the mistake, thinking that they are no good at it or something else negative.

  6. Perhaps part of it is that when the “brilliant” person errs they simply view the situation as a new challenge to overcome and they are confident in their ability to react and adjust.

    • Very true, they handle it as if they were walking in a maze and went down a dead end. They don’t stop and sit down, they trace their way back and go on with the puzzle.

  7. Unfortunately the way you learn to grow as a person in this regard is by failing and failing often. If you aren’t making mistakes on a regular basis, then I’d say you’re not challenging yourself enough and you need to take more risks.

    You really can’t grow if you’re just treading water and doing what’s most comfortable and easy.

  8. I wouldn’t call them brilliant, I’d call them professional. They’re brilliant, able to control their emotions, and most importantly professional.

  9. I’ve learned so much from making mistakes and think that mistakes and getting second chances are a big part of life and teach us how to get better and grow. Even if the consequences aren’t good it’s important to admit our mistakes and not put the blame on someone/something else.

    • Ironically, the less guilt I feel with mistakes, the more easy I find that I can accept my responsibility and the consequences of the mistake than I could in the past.

  10. Mistakes are an important part of learning. In fact, at the most basic level, they are the very basis for evolution. When a mistake gives a creature an unintended advantage, that creature’s progeny prosper and the species slowly adopts the mistake and evolves.

    At least, that’s my excuse for making mistakes.