August 25

COURAGE MONTH: DAY 25: “Each mistake teaches you something new about yourself. There is no failure, remember, except in no longer trying. It is the courage to continue that counts.” ― Chris Bradford

We really don’t make mistakes. We may do something that turns out upside down of our intentions, or we mis-speak or get something wrong and need correction. I am not sure these are “mistakes” if you will. I think they are, as this quote states-teaching points.

I love learning. I love when I get something completely wrong from what it is supposed to be and get to rethink the idea and learn a new aspect of something. Most of the time, I have learned that I am only seeing one side of something. And when I back away or look from a higher viewpoint (perspective), I find that learning both sides of the situation is crucial to knowing the whole story.

This is what causes division in politics, education, religion and all of life. We only see one small part of the story and believe we know all there is to know.

I have an acquaintance who is difficult to talk with, because she takes 1-2 hour seminars on nearly every subject she can find. The trouble is, she believes she knows all about these topics after the seminars. She has a few vocabulary words and a small picture of the topic, with no real understanding of the breadth, depth, and width of the topic. That is uncomfortable, because she is sure she is expert on the topic, and there are a lot of them. Impossible to exchange ideas with people who have all the ideas there are, if you know what I mean.

This is a fear-based way of life. Gathering evidence and data to keep ourselves from not-knowing. I pray to always be in the not-knowing frame of reference. I love to learn. So am willing to admit my ignorance of things I do not know. There are a lot of them, and I do know a lot of cool stuff. But there is always going to be more. The pool of data expands exponentially every nano-second of every day. Isn’t that cool? I think so.

I know I had to admit great ignorance and error in judgment as part of these amends steps. I can be quite wrong in how I do things. I can be so self-centered and oblivious that I say and do things that are inconsiderate and cruel without meaning to. I am better after years of dealing with this, but there are times when I forget that there are other people on MY planet, if you know what I am saying. And I want to practice mindfulness all the time.

I did it yesterday when having tea with a friend. I made mine and used our only available spoon in my cup before she got to make her tea. Rude, thoughtless, inconsiderate. Yikes! I felt like a selfish crumb. It is okay, but I got a wake up call about being more present to others, not just MY tea. Little things are good teachers…learning I am, practice I will.

Published by: Kelly

I am a therapist and counselor with long-term recovery from addictions and personal trauma. My writing reflects these experiences and the road I have traveled in 12-Step recovery settings, along with the work I have done for over 30 years in the field. My love of dolphins includes the stories of them being healers in places all over the world. I long to offer every broken spirit and body the experience of a healing hug. May my words and stories inform, uplift and delight your spirit and soothe your weary heart.

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