WHITNEY CAIN, PHD

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No Regerts, No Misteaks

I love having my own business.  I alter my systems and practices when they call for it versus waiting on a committee’s go-ahead.  I spend as I choose versus proposing expenditures to higher-ups who yea or nay based on their moods. And I make mistakes and choose from a multitude of ways to move forward right beside them.

I’m attracted to trying new things and I’m a little impulsive.  This makes me super fun at parties and primed for blunders – at parties and elsewhere.  Despite being versed in slip-ups and errors, I haven’t been great at moving on from them.

Before my business, I ruminated over mistakes.  No matter their size or impact, I measured myself by my errors and saw them as invitations to quit rather than signposts to persevere.  If it was a touch more socially acceptable, I would have wailed my mistakes – whether they involved choosing the wrong nail polish or releasing state secrets – in the street, rending my clothes all the while.

Although I still appreciate the drama of rending, I don’t have time for that in my one-person business.  If I contract the wrong accountants or mix up my calendar, I’ve got to focus on remedying or easing the impact best I can. 

This mistake making model has freed me up to move on from my gaffes in other areas.  I made a big mess out of supper the other night.  Guess what?  There’s takeout.  I let my kid get some awful app for her phone (another mistake).  Guess what?  You can delete apps.  I’ve muddled lots more and way worse, but suffice it to say, I’m better at moving on.

Because mistakes are just that – mistakes.  They don’t define us any more than our successes do.  They are part and parcel of our shared humanity.  They are invitations to go again and again and again.  Here I go again.

Whitney Cain