From the blog post When will we learn? by one of my favorite thought leaders Seth Godin

It’s essential that we make new mistakes.

We don’t make nearly enough of them. Not enough original effort, not enough generous intent, not enough daring in search of something better.

But at the same time, we need to stop making the old mistakes again and again. What did you expect to happen when you did the very same thing that didn’t work last time?

For some of us, it’s more frightening to do something new than it is to retry something that failed.

In response to this, I’m taking inventory of how I’ve been spending my days recently, and running them through the filter of:

Is this a new mistake or an old one?
Below are old mistakes that keep happening:

Jumping into forex trades (my investment portfolio includes foreign currencies) without a stop-loss and/or from fear of FOMO. I need to trust my research and signals; engineer a trading plan that prevents my impulses and addiction for a “big score” from ruining my successes; and also be okay with letting trades go if I’ve missed them.

I make more money when I trade less, and trade with multiple confirmations.

Telling myself that I’ll write at night. By then, I am out of creative energy, and I am in decompression mode. And when I do muster the discipline to do it, I sleep and wake up late the next day – ruining my future productivity – and either I spend less time with my family, don’t go on the usual one-mile run at night (where I spend time with God and take care of my health), or both. 

I don’t win in any of those scenarios. 

Overstepping my boundaries as a business consultant. I am so focused on adding value and seeing results in my business owner and salespeople clients’ performances, that I sometimes jump in and do the work they need to be doing for themselves.

I’m getting better at drawing my boundaries and not stepping over them, but the tendencies are still there. 

What’s wrong with that? I am robbing them of their ability to be self-sufficient. I am creating a toxic dependency on me. I am forcing my own agenda and habits on them. It takes me off the objective of helping them create and sustain long-term gains.

And it takes my eyes are off of growing my company effectively. 

Not sharing my ideas with my wife. I am so easily excited about business opportunities; and while that energy has its positives (it’s what got me into entrepreneurship and where I am today), it also has had its fair share of horrible crashes. 

Christine keeps me grounded. She’s very nurturing and she thinks long-term, and shares perspectives that reflect those values. When I do tell her about my ideas, they almost always become better ideas, or I dodge bullets.

But when I don’t tell her – either because I’m too impatient, or I want an idea to happen so bad that I don’t wanna be shot down (which are signals that I shouldn’t be doing them at all) – they almost always fail, or I get myself into bad stuff. 

And a bonus failure: When I don’t tell her – even if she would’ve supported it – it strains the relationship. Stupid, stupid. 

Okay – let’s change the mood for a bit. What are the new mistakes I’m committed to making today?

Researching new and rapidly-growing podcasts and blogs, and asking to be a guest writer/interviewee. I want to reach and serve more people, and create content where both myself and the platforms or service providers win.

Increasing the frequency of my newsletter. I’ve refrained from sending more than one email a week. I told myself that I hated getting too many emails; but at the same time, I welcome certain emails and sometimes wished they came more frequently (like Seth Godin’s daily messages).

I caught myself telling myself a false narrative – and changed it. The true stories are: “I hate getting too many emails with no value” and “If I could get an email every day to inspire and recalibrate me, bring it on!”

(on this same note, I hope I don’t annoy you with more emails!).

What’s a new, generous mistake that you’ve been thinking of making? I’d love to hear about it, and help you fail forward. 

Let’s spend more time honoring habits that work and making so many new mistakes today, that old ones can’t even come to the party. 

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