I’m not a big fan of being nervous. I usually mess stuff up when I’m nervous, make goofy mistakes & generally present myself poorly. I was on an important phone conversation earlier this week & I found myself getting nervous, stuttering, stumbling & sounding less than brainy
So what to do about being nervous? Here are a few helpful ideas:
*prepare ahead of time – usually my biggest downfall
*pray and ask God to give you peace
*stay focused on what’s immediate, not getting overwhelmed by what’s massive
*trust that God is bigger than your humanity & flaws – message out a mess, testimony from a test & redemption from rubble 🙂
Yesterday, I made the mistake of posting a poem that I thought Dr Maya Angelou wrote. I received lots of helpful & gracious feedback so I edited my post at the bottom to acknowledge my mistake. I left the poem, nevertheless, because I think it’s a really good poem & I found it to be very encouraging, no matter who wrote it.
But the topic of mistakes is a tricky topic. We all make mistakes, pretty close to everyday. We make mistakes as we drive, when we cook, saying things we shouldn’t, not speaking up when we should, work / school mistakes, . . . . . So here’s some that help me when I make mistakes (feel free to chime in with your own ideas as well):
**be quick to admit a mistake & apologize
**try to make new mistakes & not the same ones ,)
**the only person with no mistakes is Jesus
**mistakes often have more lessons than successes
**be quick to forgive mistakes even if the person doesn’t ask forgiveness
**if pencils are mistakes, grace is the eraser
**let your mistakes be more constructive than destructive
Sometimes I run into people who I’ve briefly met many years ago & it’s unfortunate that I don’t always remember everyone. There are also events & situations that I’ve forgotten over the years as well. It’s probably good that I’ve forgotten some things 🙂
But let’s think about forgetting some things that would be good. Let’s forget:
*how to complain
*how to be negative
*how to worry
*the anxiety & fear that lingered w a past event of trauma
*how to belittle people
*the “I can’t” words
*shame from bad decisions
Forgetting the past, lets press on toward Jesus!
I recently used a parking meter for an appt that I was in and I skimped on the meter. Sure enough, my meeting went longer than I expected & voila, I found the ever lovely parking ticket on my windshield. As I looked at the ticket, I figured out that if I would have added 50cents to the meter, I could have avoided the $25 ticket. I hate making these kinds of mistakes – where I try to skimp with time or money & wind up spending more; hate those kinds of mistakes.
So to get the most out of this experience, here are my learning points that might be helpful to you as well:
margin – give yourself some cushion so that you don’t spend more time & money than is necessary
grace – berating yourself for mistakes is wasted emotional energy; learn the lesson & move on
change – repeating the same errors is stupid; learning & changing is smart 🙂
I’ve been reading about how King David in the Bible wanted to bring the Ark of the Covenant (God’s presence) up to Jerusalem. His first attempt to move the Ark was disastrous – a guy was killed. In David’s second attempt, he made sure that everyone followed God’s directions on how to transport the Ark.
My take away from this story is that we must always treat God with respect & reverence, never thinking that we can do things our way & ignore God’s directives, presence or preferences. We can revel in God’s presence but not at the expense of reverence 🙂
If you’re like me, from time to time, we make bad decisions. I don’t like it when I make a bad decision & I like the consequences even less. But what is worse than making a bad decision is not learning from such mistakes. So here’s a few things that might be helpful when dealing with bad decisions:
*mistakes & failures are an essential ingredient of success
*beating yourself up over mistakes adds zero value – own the mistake & mistake & move on
*blaming someone else tends to minimize our personal learning experience with the mistake or bad decision
*dont let the fear of a bad decision or mistakes paralyze you from trying
*consider all the people in the Bible who made mistakes & you’ll start feeling better quickly ,)
I read this morning in 1 Sam 13 about how Saul got really stressed out & jumped ahead of Samuel & offered a sacrifice without Samuel. In verse 11 Samuel confronts Saul to find out why he acted so brashly. Saul’s reply is really interesting to me. Basically, he says there are 3 reasons why he wrongly did the sacrifice thing: the philistines were closing in, the Israelites were slowly leaving him & Samuel hadn’t shown up. Personally, I think these are all really legit reasons. But the core problem was that Saul made the decision not to trust God & to take matters into his own hands – and this behavior is
extremely familiar to me & maybe to you as well. It didn’t turn out well for Saul, nor does this technique usually work for me either. So the moral of the story is that no matter how many good reasons we may have, our trust in God can never be a negotiating point 🙂
We all have busy lives & I genuinely want to do a good job being a mom, wife, encourager & human. So this afternoon, I accidentally double booked myself, again. I hate it when I do this, but when I got in the middle of this potential train wreck, the Holy Spirit came through, again to bail me out. The conflicting appointments got sorted out with a minimum of consternation & no injuries 🙂
The Holy Spirit reminds me yet again, that I earnestly need His help, maybe the most when I’m totally clueless. He swoops into my life & “saves the day” yet again 😀
We all make mistakes – some are little & some are massive! Of course there are lots of consequences that we have to work through from our mistakes & we can certainly take away some great lessons. But let’s be careful to leave behind any shame from our mistakes & only take with us the constructive lessons that we learn. This is really important because shame can distort the constructive lessons & turn the mistakes into black holes. So with our mistakes, let’s take the lessons but leave the shame 🙂
My husband was recently upset with me for not communicating with him about something that is extremely important. He called me and I quickly knew that he was displeased with me about something. Thankfully, when my husband gets upset about something, he usually does a good job about maintaining constructive communication to resolve the issue rather than ranting and raving or taking cheap shots on peripheral topics. When he explained the problem, I was clearly at fault.
There was another issue this week where I had been responsible to take some notes and had made some mistakes in my note taking. My gracious friends helped point out some of these mistakes and they were very kind and gentle with their help.
In both of these situations, I totally owned up to my shortcomings. I didn’t deflect my mistake, blame someone else or have an emotional reaction. In both situations, I explained that there was no one to blame but me, that I had definitely messed up and I apologized. I made an internal decision to try to do better in the future for these areas. I didn’t ingest any bitterness, animosity, resentment or other negative emotional baggage. When we get corrected, let’s own our mistake, get better and appreciate the feedback 🙂