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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Mistakes or Mis - Takes!

No matter how old we get;
no how many degrees we have; 
no matter how big or little our bank balance is; 
no matter where we we live;
no matter how many mistakes we've already made,
we STILL all make mistakes.

Picture taken by Aly.

And when we do make a mistake, we either blame the situation or another person OR we blame ourselves.
Our reaction tends to vary depending on how big of a mistake it is.
If it's a simple, inconsequential mistake, we tend to get over it almost immediately.
But if it's a mistake that we perceive as significant, the intensity of our reaction tends to match our perception.

I've made plenty of mistakes, all kinds of mistakes.
But it seems like I keep making the same mistakes again and again.
When I realize that I've made the same mistake yet again, but perhaps in a different form, I get mad at myself.
I start feeling foolish...or rather, I start feeling stupid.
My mental tapes start re-playing once again.
"How could you do this again?"
"What were you thinking?"
"What is wrong with you?"
"Why can't you learn from your mistakes?"
"Why do you do this again and again?"
"When are you going to learn?"
"When are you going to start exercising some self-control?"

Another picture taken by Aly.

Some of us beat ourselves up for weeks, months or even years. 
But if we're lucky, we can feel bad, process it, learn from it and move on sooner than later.
 I was an expert at self-degradation (putting oneself down).
But over the years, I've gotten better.
These days, the longest I've been angry at myself or felt sorry for myself, has been a few days.
 I turn to God, my angels, a few of my wise friends and a few of my closest family members to help me figure things out. 
I ask the standard questions.
 "Why am I doing this to myself?" or "What was I thinking doing /saying ...?" 
But I have to remind myself to instead ask myself,
"What am I suppose to be learning from this experience?" 

This is one of my favorite pictures of the sunset and yes,  taken by Aly.

When I reach out to those around me, I've learned NOT to turn to just anybody for advice. 
People almost always give you advice based on their own life experiences and life circumstances and not necessarily on what you need to learn from it.
It's the rare individual who is able to be unbiased and objective.
It's indeed the rare individual who is able to give you honest and helpful feedback in a non-judgmental, respectful and loving manner.
I've had people, whom I've loved and respected, literally project their beliefs and biases on me.
 I believed, embraced and fully took ownership of whatever projections were being cast my way without realizing the burden of it to my psyche and my soul.
But lately, Thank God, I am clear about who I am and what I am about.
 Knowing myself  has helped me to recognize when someone is projecting their beliefs onto me.

Saw these birds in the tree in the Costco parking lot a few days ago.
It was a cloudy, dull day but they were beautiful.

But instead of shutting people out, arguing with them, or defending my point of view, I realize that I am in this situation and having this conversation with this particular person, because I am suppose to be hearing what is being said.
I realize that I am suppose to learn something from this conversation.
So instead of arguing with the person, feeling the need to defend my point of view or totally shutting them out, I've been working on letting them speak and actually listening to them.
I resist the urge to tell them that they are wrong.
 I resist the need to stand up for myself.
Instead, I realize that the words that are coming out of their mouth, are the exact ones that I am suppose to be hearing right now.  
I realize that it is as important for them to say what they're saying to me, as it is for me to be listening to what is being said. 
I have learned to simply keep my mouth shut, and really pay attention to what is being communicated to me.
I listen to what is being said verbally, through their words, and what is being communicated non-verbally, through their body language.
I listen but I DONOT take on their projections as my own.
Gorgeous sunset. Aly took this picture.

This is what I've learned this time around....
Yes, I made a mistake, again.
No, this does not make me stupid.
No, I am not a bad person.
I did the best that I could. 
I need to forgive myself.
I am forgiving myself.
I am going to figure this out and hopefully, learn from it.

I also realize that mistakes are NOT THE END OF THE WORLD!
Mistakes are MIS - TAKES! 
Mistakes are an opportunity try it again.
Mistakes are a second chance, given to us, in a not so pretty package.

Just look how this bird so gracefully balances itself on this skinny branch.
So I forgive myself and I remind myself that I am a child of God and thus created perfectly in His image.
 I am not stupid, broken, damaged or less than in any way.
God loves me unconditionally, no matter how little or big my mistake.
God does not judge.
He loves me too much to do that.
That is not what life is about.
God is sitting back and letting me figure this thing out on my own.
He gives me unlimited chances until I "get it".
When I learn the lesson, then, and only then, do I get to move on to the next lesson in life.
Learning lessons and evolving as a soul, is what life is about.
So I choose to surrender myself, flawed and all, to my perfect, loving, caring, merciful God and ask him to help guide me on this difficult journey. 
I ask HIM to help me learn from my MIS-TAKES!

An oil spill in the Walmart parking lot. Just thought it was beautiful!
I pray that you are kind to yourselves all the time and especially when you make a mistake.
I pray that you recognize your mistake as simply a MIS-TAKE!
I pray that you experience HIS love for you !
I pray that you learn to love yourself unconditionally as HE loves you unconditionally.
I pray that you find peace, joy, happiness and truth in your every breath, with HIM as your guide, cheerleader and co-pilot.

Love and Light,
From one sufi to another,


  1. isn't it people some times dont realize when they are making any mistakes, until its to late to realize it. and there fore they r reapeating the same mistakes over and over until we face the consequences.

  2. True! One of the reasons we keep repeating the mistakes is because we are unaware of even realizing that those are mistakes. We make choices and all our choices have consequences. Consequences can be either positive or negative. Negative consequences serve to help us realize that we are making a mistake. When the mistakes are in our awareness, then we can choose to do something about it.