We can all learn from our mistakes. You hear it all the time. And it's not difficult but you need 3 things in order to successfully learn from your mistakes and maximize your improvement from them. Here they are:
1. The Growth Mindset
This is THE most important requirement to learning from mistakes. The Growth Mindset is a belief that every skill, including intelligence and creative ability, can be developed through learning and hard work. The opposite of the Growth Mindset is the Fixed Mindset which is a belief that a person's skills and qualities are fixed and that talent alone determines success. If you are not familiar with The Growth Mindset stop reading this now and get familiar immediately: here, here and here.
"It is impossible to learn from a mistake that you have made an excuse for."
You must be humble enough to own up to the mistake to learn from it. If you have made an excuse for what went wrong or shifted the blame to someone else then you've essentially said that you didn't do anything wrong. If you've convinced yourself that you didn't make a mistake then any opportunity of learning from it has disappeared. Admitting you've made a mistake and assuming responsibility for it becomes a lot easier to do when you have the Growth Mindset.
You've got the Growth Mindset, you are humble enough to admit you've made a mistake and you've taken responsibility for your mistake....Now, are you Open-Minded enough to learn why you made a mistake and what you could have done differently? I wrote last week about the importance of being Open. (Check it out here if you didn't get a chance to read it) Often, it is others who can show us or teach us how to correct our mistakes. Being open to correction, coaching and advice from others is critical.
We all make mistakes and they are often the best way to learn. Not learning from a mistake is....a mistake! Make sure you have The Growth Mindset, Humility and Open-Mindedness to learn from your mistakes and you will make the most of the opportunity to learn from them.