Everyone has had some serious success. Whether it was the state hockey championship or getting an A in that class that you definitely thought you were going to fail, having those wonderful times in our lives are fun and exhilarating. The life “wins” are easy to talk about, and they give us a lot of pride when someone congratulates us.
But on the flip side of all that good stuff, are the bad times. The serious failures. The unintentional times we totally blew it. They are the times that we feel the absolute worst. However, it’s in those dark moments, the embarrassing moments, the “I’m never going to recover from this” moments that we find our character. So why is it then that we don’t talk about them more?
Our late teens and twenties are such a time of self discovery. If I look back on my teens now, I made some of the biggest mistakes… but I’m still alive. I’m still here. And you will be, too. Whether through your grit or resilience, you will bounce back from messing up. Make your mistakes early so that less is at play and you have more years to never do it again. Oh, and when you do mess up… know that you’re not alone.
1. Botch a big interview: Whether you’re completely unprepared or get so nervous that you can hardly give an answer, failing terribly at an interview will ensure that you are always prepared for the things that matter to you. And when they ask you those questions next time, you’ll have the answers.
2. Put something you shouldn’t on Social Media: If you put a big graphic with the F word on it and your boss saw, or you were showcased in some not so great pictures and your parents saw, making an error in social media will have consequences you learn from. And it’ll finally force you to learn those privacy settings like the back of your hand (which everyone should do.)
3. Connect your computer to a projector without closing all of windows: Cue the embarrassment, enough said.
4. Say yes, when you should have said no: You’ll feel guilty and stressed out like I did. You’ll know saying yes happened because you just wanted to be nice. And you’ll realize how important it is to drop that need to be liked and to just say no… often.
5. Impulsively buy something you can’t afford: If it’s the flats you’d been dreaming of or that really amazing winter jacket, buying something on the spot and then having insane buyers remorse will help curb your habits. No wardrobe piece is worth the feeling of possibly not having money to make rent or pulling money out of your saving account.
6. Be shameless with your feelings: show up at his or her house unexpected. Tell him you love him. Scream on the sidewalk. Just for once, be the one somebody calls crazy. It’s the best feeling to know you put it all out there, even if you feel like an idiot the next day.
7. Have a wardrobe malfunction: Like a major one. Like your full-zip back dress busting at a celebrity superbowl party leaving your entire backside naked, like you’re rocking a black hospital gown. Let’s just say you’ll never make that mistake again.
8. Reply all on an email meant for one person, and be red faced for the rest of the day: Next time you’ll slow down before pressing send on those comments. And anything you do put in writing, you’ll edit next time.
9. Screw up gender: call Jamie a she in a train of about 10 emails, and then get on an interview call with her and realize Jamie is actually a man. You’ll always think twice before associating a name to a particular gender.
10. Love the wrong person: They weren’t the one for you. Whether it was a lover or a best friend, making a big ole mistake in creating relationships with the wrong people will show you how important that love is. How important it is to give it to the right people. And how picky you should be with your time.