When we are very young or inexperienced, the idea of mistakes becoming masterpieces might not resonate yet. Regrets seem like losses.
We learn, though, that masterpieces usually take some time to create. If you’re newer at something, you haven’t had a lot of time see it evolve to high art.
But if you will look at the world of masterpieces, you will see projects and movements and expressions that often started out small and shaky. Or wrong, even.
Masterpieces weren’t born that way. They were simply pieces of work. Ideas. Effort. And a lot didn’t turn out perfectly, yet became perfect examples. No regrets. How?
You may have regrets, but don’t keep them.
You not only have permission to make mistakes, you have permission to accept that you do. You might not feel great about things you wish you did differently (aka regrets) but as soon as you accept your misses, you can begin to take new aim.
The key is in staying calm and allowing for improvements.
You can suspend disbelief and make something new out of what went wrong.
Or you can look at what went wrong through new eyes: eyes of acceptance and even appreciation.
With the right perspective, regrets become a learning opportunity. And you will be able to let regrets go when you transform them into better work.
- Michealangelo painted many bodies of women who look just like men, and he added what looks like botched boob jobs to them. You can find several examples of his mistakes in the Sistene Chapel.
- 3M company took over a decade to eventually use the mistaken extra-weak adhesive accidentally invented by Spencer Silver in their labs. But when they did Post-It Notes were born. Good call.
- Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin due to a petri dish left to grow filthy while he went on holiday. Leaving perishables to grow mold is not recommended, but he did make the most of his error.
When you consider your life as your own discovery, invention, and art, your regrets become inspirations and information, instead of wasted time or obstacles that keep you from your destiny.
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