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Sometimes The Things We Regret Bring Out The Best In Us. How we Learn from Our Mistakes.

Life is full of paradoxes. If we want to learn, we need to make mistakes.


 Every one of us has done things that we eventually live to regret.
How we Learn from Our Mistakes

No matter how much we choose to deny it, we are highly emotional and reactive creatures. These emotions are often a double-edged sword. Those emotions inspire the best of human behaviour, including love, passion, hope and courage. Unfortunately, in the heat of the moment, these emotions can also cause fear, anger, hatred, and defensiveness. These are darker sides of human nature that are uncomfortable to acknowledge and can often lead to behaviours that we come to regret. But luckily, we have a built-in defense mechanism.


Some emotions have evolved along the way to help us cope with these darker emotions ...

...and the consequences of our impulsive behaviours. In previous posts, I have discussed the ideas of a mistake and how we handle mistakes. This post further elaborates on our personal character from how we handle these interactions that we ultimately regret.


I was playing a very passionate hockey game between two high-quality teams, with bragging rights on the line. Obviously, blood was pumping, emotions were at an all-time high and the excitement and tension were palpable. A spark was all that was needed to set off the powder keg, and it came in the form of incidental contact that both teams took to be purposeful and intended to injure. It resulted in harsh words being exchanged and the expulsion of a player from the tournament. Not a nice scenario.


After leaving the game and returning to the hotel, feeling absolutely awful with heated and hurt feelings on all sides, the person who was eventually expelled from the tournament for words said in the heat of the moment, reached out. She demonstrated the best of human behavior afterwards. She reached out to the team and made efforts to apologize and make amends, even going so far as to come back to the rink and apologize in person. I want to be very clear; I admire her and her actions.


This is what I would consider to be a true demonstration of a person’s character.

We are all going to make mistakes in life, and we will inevitably engage in a behaviour or action that we will regret. Maybe a minor road incident where we flip the bird, or post something negative online, among countless other examples. Mistakes are going to happen, but if we can swallow our pride, and some of our human arrogance, these opportunities become the opportunities needed for us to grow and demonstrate our true character and selves.

   

Jessica Blake Registered Psychologist

Life is full of paradoxes. If we want to learn, we need to make mistakes. If we want to grow, we sometimes need to learn from ourselves, and our poor behaviour, and then have the courage to make amends. Imagine if we all did this. At work, at home, in our relationships, as countries and nations?

Come heal, grow and create together

signature of Jessica Blake



 

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