We live in a type of society where it is considered shameful to do mistakes. If you do things which other people see as foolish or even stupid, then there must be something seriously wrong with you. Right? Wrong!
We hear every day about so many people who became famous and successful in various areas of life. What you come across the first time you hear about such people is the image of highly intelligent, ultra-rich and very successful persons who stop at nothing and dare to dream big, as well as actually make their dreams come true. But, rarely do we consider all the things these people had to go through to reach their final goals and destinations.
Many of them have fascinating backgrounds which will make one think very deeply about what makes a person able to cope with life situations, overcome challenges and fully realize their potential. It is so impressive to read about many cases of people who did unimaginable things while they were young, things you would probably never expect them to do.
In this article, we take a deeper glimpse at the lives of some very successful people and find out what was the secret behind their success. We ask ourselves the question: Does being young and foolish means that you are doomed to never create the life you of your dreams?
One of the most famous spiritual gurus of the 20st century, Osho, spoke a lot about what it means to learn and develop. What I particularly like about Osho’s viewpoint on this matter is that he encouraged people to be themselves and appreciate every single experience in life, even those who at first look, seem stupid and wrong.
When it comes to achieving your goals, we can say this with certainty: don’t ever underestimate the power of time!
Time not only gives a one’s the chance to use their capabilities, go after their dreams and leave a lasting imprint on this world, but it also gives other people enough space to alter their views of a person’s achievements. Success and failure are not absolute measures of one’s life, but rather the opposite ends of a spectrum that is constantly in flux. When you look at it, your current viewpoints are only as accurate as you let them to be.
But, as Steve Jobs rightfully said: you “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards.” We can never say with absolute certainty how some actions may result in the future and cause changes in our lives. What’s important is to never judge ourselves for doing immature and imprudent things.
Yet, most people today are facing with the fear of making a mistake during a large period of their lives. The root cause of this mental attitude can be found in the very education in modern society. The teachers who teach us in school continually tell us to be invulnerable, to never make any mistakes, and never act foolish. With such prejudices, we never allow ourselves to be natural, spontaneous and do whatever we feel like. The psychological pressure is huge and it makes us nervous, tensed and full of guilt for all the wrong things we did, and fear of what other people might think or say. Is this the way we want and deserve to live our lives? Why not allow ourselves to live spontaneously and believing in our potential with realistic optimism that we can gain benefits of every possible situation and action, including those who appear to be wrong and stupid?
Let’s take a closer look at the lives of several people who lived in various periods in history which will serve us as examples of how precisely making hasty decisions and doing stupid things can be the main factor for later success and personal growth.
Even some of the smartest people that ever lived did absurd mistakes which you would least expect them to do. Our intention is to suggest a more relaxed approach towards life and how we cope with daily challenges. Alan Watts, the main figure of the introduction and popularization of Zen Buddhism to the Western civilization, spoke of this lifestyle. He explained how the mature and wise person lives their life in a balanced way, not too much worried and stressed whether they did the right thing, but neither living without acknowledging one’s responsibility for daily actions.
There is a very appropriate quote on this subject which says: success is what lies on the other side of your fear. In this way, maybe it is not so important to consider the possible negative consequences when one makes a mistake, but facing your fear of making a mistake at all. If we life in a constant worry and indecisiveness whether to do something or not, we would never take that first and crucial step towards accomplishing our goals. What if your dream coming true is just behind the corner of that possible mistake which scares you so much?!
Poet Erin Hanson wrote a beautiful poem which speaks precisely about man’s greatest fear: fear of taking a risk. Maybe it’s not the very risky act that scares us, but the possible negative outcome which would assure us that we did the wrong thing. However, Hanson said it beautifully:
“There is freedom waiting for you,
On the breezes of the sky,
And you ask, “What if I fall?”
Oh, but my darling,
What if you fly?”
In the end, we ask you this: who gets to be the judge of what is stupid or not, wrong or right? The lives of these people firmly prove that what others may look as a mistake or a foolish act, may eventually turn out to be the most influential factor of one’s development and ultimate success.
We would love to hear your opinion on this subject, so be sure to comment and share this article with everyone. Let’s start a discussion and expand our views and horizons.
And don’t forget: your best teacher is your last mistake!