11/05/2015 01:02 pm ET Updated Nov 05, 2016

Learning From Your Mistakes

There's good sense in learning from your mistakes. There's a bit of truth in the idea that if you learn from your error -- which means, you don't make the same one twice -- that you didn't make a mistake at all.

The idea of learning from your mistakes puts a lot of pressure on you to avoid a second misstep. Apparently, you don't have a get-out-of-jail free card if you find yourself in the same situation more than once.

But you've made a million errors, bad decisions, and wrong turns in your life. You won't succeed in never repeating a single one of your mistakes.

I don't mean to suggest you should careen through life, taking actions or making decisions you very well know aren't smart or good for you. But neither should you be so hyper-aware of every move you make, for fear of repeating a past failure, that you hold yourself back from new opportunities and chances to build the life you want.

If you knowingly trusted the wrong person in the past, you may hesitate to give that trust to another person again today. But never trusting anyone because of an initial negative experience allows it to continuously impact you.

It's not easy to find the balance between remembering your lessons learned and preventing past experiences from negatively affecting your present. It's something I struggle with often, but I'm slowly finding the path that allows me to grow wiser as I learn from my mistakes without becoming so hemmed in by the effort to never repeat a single one.

Here's what I like to remind myself of when I'm seeking out the necessary balance between using my knowledge gained through experience and stopping my past from creeping into my present:

Trust someone. If you don't, you'll always be alone and adrift.

Be yourself. You'll never be happy if you don't embrace who you are.

Don't keep score. Keep faith instead.

Quit overthinking. Play to your strengths and don't be afraid to act intuitively.

Drop judgment. Embrace joy in all things.

Look people in the eye. Smile. And stop suspecting people are out to get you.

Quit trying to beat back anything remotely good in life.

Say thank you and show your appreciation for being a part of this universe by making the most of every day you've got.

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