Stop worrying! After all, everyone makes mistakes, right? I know, easier said than done. Especially when it comes to work mistakes.
It’s only human nature to over-think about the mistakes we’ve made. And those moments of reflection can actually help us learn a great deal about ourselves and our work. But when contemplating your work mistakes becomes an obsession, it stops being a tool for self-improvement… and can make problems much bigger than they deserve to be.
Stop Obsessing Over Work Mistakes!
Part of the problem is that our brains tend to use ‘down time’ to process our mistakes. When your mind has nothing else to do, it reflects on the past, and particularly on your work mistakes.
One way to jolt yourself out of this mindset is to give your mind something else to do. Get a change of scenery (or at least a change of ‘mental scenery’). Going for a walk, having a chat, or getting stuck in a new task can all help dispel that inner voice. If you can’t get past it, try writing down a step-by-step plan to fix your mistake and avoid making that same error in the future. In other words: Give yourself permission to first process, then proceed with the next phase of your work without dwelling on the last.
This infographic from NetCredit can help you learn how leave your mistakes in the past. Just as important, it may help you avoid falling into the same obsessional trap again and again. Different solutions will work with different instances of regret, so if one method isn’t working then try the next. Because when you get right down to it, obsessing over the mistakes you’ve made at work can start to affect your health and personal life also. In fact, fixating on past experiences can lead to heart disease and depression.
To err is human, but to learn how to use those errors productively is divine.