“10 Mistakes Smart People Never Make Twice”!

John J. Stathas, Ph.D., LMFT

Ever made a mistake? Repeated it? Most of you, and me, have done so. Perhaps we just need to get smarter. According to prolific writer, Dr. Travis Bradberry, “smart” people never make a mistake twice. Who are the “smart” people?

Researchers from the Clinical Psychophysiology Lab at Michigan State University found that people fall into two groups when it comes to making mistakes: those who have a “fixed mind set” (“forget this, I’ll never be good at it”) and those who have a “growth mind set” (“wake up call! Let’s see what I did wrong so I won’t do it again”). Those with a growth mind set acknowledge their mistakes and use them to get better. They have the commitment and tools in place to learn from their errors. Those with the fixed mind set are bound to repeat their mistakes because they try their best to ignore them. And which type are you, Respected Reader?

Dr. Bradberry’s  tips on how to not repeat mistakes. If you want to get “smarter” embrace the following directives.

1. BELIEVING IN SOMEONE OR SOMETHING THAT’S TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE: Naivety and lack of due diligence can be catastrophic. I remember making a foolish stock investment years ago that turned out to be a dud. A stockbroker near my office was all hyped about it – and I bought in. The stock sunk, as did my trust in him. Did not use him again and have since researched much better my stock choices.

2. DOING THE SAME THING OVER AND OVER AND EXPECTING A DIFFERENT RESULT:  Famous Einstein quote. Smart people know that if you want a different result, they need to change their approach, even when it’s painful to do so. I see this in my practice when certain people keep dating and marrying the same type of people – and failing.

3. FAILING TO DELAY GRATIFICATION: This is particularly true during these times of instant news and communication. Smart people know that you have to put in the hard work, whether it be in career or personal relationships, in order to get the reward.

4. OPERATING WITHOUT A BUDGET: Budgets are built on analysis, commitment, and discipline. Such traits are necessary for any worthwhile goal.

5. LOSING SIGHT OF THE BIG PICTURE: Getting caught up in details, needing instant gratification, not adequately seeing the ultimate goal lead to failure. “Keep your eye on the prize!”

6. NOT DOING YOUR HOMEWORK: Shortcuts don’t work. You must pay the price, do the grunt work, get in the trenches, in order to get the desired result.

7. TRYING TO BE SOMEONE OR SOMETHING YOU’RE NOT: This is a big one. Fake leads to failure. Authenticity and integrity, being real, are the core of who you are. Display with openness and confidence.

8. TRYING TO PLEASE EVERYONE: It doesn’t work. You become a chameleon with no core of essence. You must know who you are and live it out with integrity and consistency.

9. PLAYING THE VICTIM: This is a form of manipulation by a weak person. By trying this tactic you unwittingly give up your power – and that makes no sense.

10. TRYING TO CHANGE SOMEONE: People change only when they want to and have the wherewithal to accomplish it. You cannot “fix” someone. Instead, built your life around genuine positive people that can synergize with you into moving forward.

What do you think, Respected Reader? Do you practice some or all of these directives? Perhaps they may serve as a reminder to lessen your mistakes. I leave you with this favorite quote of mine from Nelson Mandela, “I never lose, I either win or I learn”.

“The unexamined life is not worth living”  Socrates

Dr. Stathas can be reached at 706-473-1780. Email: jstathas13@gmail.com. Web site: drstathas.googlepages.com. Blog: drstathas.com”

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