Deciding is an everyday thing and we usually hope that our choices will generate positive results. Every day we make decisions about trivial or transcendental matters, but there is always a risk that we must take: choosing is giving up and many times we are exposed to error.
The important thing is to be aware that we are prone to making mistakes and if we make mistakes, we must also be able to learn from them. Mistakes should be taken as a genuine learning opportunity, what is not worth is making the same mistake repeatedly.
On the other hand, we must constantly question our decisions since assuming that we are always right can be quite dangerous.
In this regard, I invite you to reflect on a text that my friend and consultant Ichak Adizes shared with me some time ago.
There is no error
Think about it. If at the time of making a decision you already knew that it was a mistake, would you have made it?
It is not logical, of course. We don’t make mistakes on purpose. Unless we are addicted, for example, to smoking, we will do so knowing that this is harmful to our health.
But if we do not suffer from addictions, if we act logically and with control of our emotions and needs, then we will make the best possible decision for us at any given time.
We talk about trivial decisions and not so much, like getting married, buying a house or accepting a job offer.
Many times, a mistake defeats us. Usually recriminations start after a certain time: after obtaining more information we develop a greater knowledge and become aware of the undesirable repercussions of our decision.
So, “the error” is our judgment on a decision made in the past. However, based on new information that we previously did not assimilate, regrets begin to take shape. Obviously this is nonsense.
At the moment in which we decide and act, we make the best decision within our reach at that moment. We act with all the emotional, intellectual and spiritual capacities of which we are capable. So what do we gain when we hit our heads for having acted in a certain way?
Instead of saying “I made a mistake”, we should ask ourselves: what has this experience left me as learning, now that I have new information and more experience? What should I have known, considered, judged and evaluated differently? What should I learn from this experience?
Finally, we must write these reflections and periodically review what we have written. Why? Because we tend to forget life’s lessons and repeat the same “mistakes.” We all know someone who is divorced and ends up marrying a person very much like their previous partner. We repeat the same patterns over and over.
As we write, we articulate the lessons. And by reviewing what has been written, we better assimilate those notes and observations.
The notes with the lessons described and clearly written will serve as a reminder that will prevent us from making decisions for which we will regret and punish later.
There are no mistakes in life, only lessons to learn.
Dr. Intestinal Calderon Adizes
* The author is President and Founder of Grupo Salinas.
The author is president and founder of Grupo Salinas