Learning From Mistakes

Don’t carry your mistakes around with you. Instead, place them under your feet and use them as stepping stones. 

We all make mistakes, but in every mistake there is an opportunity to learn. At SEEDs for Autism, we work with our participants to develop problem solving skills to understand what went wrong, and to find ways to prevent it from happening again. We asked SEEDs participants to share their thoughts on how mistakes make us GROW.

CHRIS M.
Can Mistakes Help You Grow?
Let’s face it, almost NO ONE wants to make mistakes one time too many. It can be overwhelming for someone to keep going. Should they just give up on what they’re going for? Real answer: NO. Here are some reasons why you should never give up on your dreams and goals, even when you make some mistakes along the way.
I’ve had some moments when I, too, get overwhelmed by making mistakes on my projects. At times, I’d grow more impatient and want to quit. But over the years, I’ve learned to take a break every now and then to calm down. I’d even regenerate my idea engine as I take some time to relax. When I’m done with my alone time, I would eventually go back to whatever my project is. That would be how I’d grow: to take some alone time to relax and regenerate.
Whenever I take a breather, I would listen to music that I enjoy to blot out the outside noises that make me feel negative. This would be my advice for those who make mistakes and get overwhelmed by them.
Also, mistakes can help you get better at what you do best if you keep practicing and studying that particular subject you want to work on. Remember, never give up! You can do it.

SONJA
It’s important to keep trying when we make a mistake because if you don’t keep trying you won’t know what it feels like to achieve the goal. Mistakes can help you grow because you do what you can do to improve next time. I learned from a mistake when I broke something in the kitchen and I felt bad. I told my family, said sorry, and helped clean up the mess. It was good nobody was hurt and it made me feel good to tell them what I did.

JUSTIN M.
When you make a mistake try again until you succeed.
My advice is never think ahead of yourself.
I will think before I do it. It makes me feel happy.

SYDNEY L.
You’ll learn from your mistakes and do better next time. Mistakes teach us to do better and learn new skills. I made a mistake by going camping and not bringing water. Also, at the first camping trip, I threw up because I ate twice the amount of food I should have. The second time I made sure to bring a water bottle and cut down on the food.

ANNA
Mistakes make you grow because a mistake is something you did wrong and if it was your mistake, you can learn why it was wrong and grow from it. An example of a mistake helping me grow is when once I escalated a situation when I had an argument with my Dad. I was angry even after my Dad had apologized, but the argument went on because I was silent, refusing to forgive him. This caused the argument to go on longer. I learned from this mistake that if it was something small, like it was in this case, I should have accepted the apology. Because now I know that I made the argument longer. Now if a petty argument happens, as it happens in life, when things get stressed, I know just to accept and apologize and I feel more of an adult when doing so.

DANIEL N.
Hello, I’m Daniel and today I’m going to be talking about my experience at United Parcel Service. I got timed out by the sign out pad for failure to sign fast enough for the pad to accept my signature. Now I sign for packages faster and the machine accepts my signature for packages when I’m required to sign them out of the pickup location. I ask the staff to check the mail for picking up at the store. The result is I learned and now the process goes more smoothly. I feel confident.

CHARLEY
Why is it important to keep trying when we make a mistake?
It is important to keep trying when we make a mistake so that we can learn to do better & do it right. By learning from our past mistakes, we in fact become wiser and more successful in the future. A couple of days ago, I forgot to fill the dog’s water bowl when I fed him his dinner. The result was the dog was very thirsty because his water bowl was empty. That made me feel bad. In the future, I will try to be sure to fill his water bowl when I feed him. Then he’ll be sure to stay hydrated.

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This article was featured in an issue of the SEEDs for Autism Newsletter. If you would like to subscribe and hear more stories from SEEDs participants, please visit our websiteThank you!

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