Thursday, November 8, 2012

Are you afraid of making a mistake?

Mistakes happen right? Well if you are the kind of person that can shutter at the thought of making a mistake, then you are afraid of making a mistake. The fear of making a mistake is actually a bigger issue than fear. It is the pervasisve, yet concealed, feeling of shame. Shame produces such beliefs as "I am bad" or "There is something wrong with me."  In this way, a mistake is not just a mistake. It is a horrible and painful experience which needs to be avoided at all cost. In other words it is not, "Oops, I made a mistake," it is the internalized belief that "I am a mistake."

Where does the fear of making a mistake originate?

You may have had experiences in your life such as in your childhood, in which you were scolded or shamed for making a mistake. A parent, sibling or teacher may have said things like, "How could you do that? "You are so stupid," or "What were you thinking?" "Shame on you." Shame is also the result of being called names or from being blamed by others. "I didn't do it, she did." "It is all her fault." 

The fear of making a mistake can also be a birth issue. For example, if you were an unplanned pregnancy or born of young or unwed parents, you may have been born with shame. You may have internalized the belief that "I am a mistake." If your parents hoped for the opposite gender, you may have believed that "I am a disappointment." These two beliefs have long term detrimental effects. For example, the person who believes that they are a mistake can have difficulty admitting to making a mistake, or apologizing. In doing so, it feels as if they are admitting to being a mistake.  The person who believes that they are a disappointment to their parents, will continue to feel that they disappoint others. In other words, if you feel like a mistake, you are likely to make mistakes. If you feel like a disappointment , you are likely to disappoint others.

The fear of making a mistake can also be a karmic issue. For example if you experienced a past life in which you were blamed or persecuted for a crime you did or did not commit, you may carry forth into this lifetime the feeling of shame. "Shame on you for doing that." "It was your fault that people died."  

Regardless of how your fear of making a mistake originated, it is important to know that it can be healed. You deserve a life of peace and joy that comes from healing shame.  Most importantly do not run away from your fears of making a mistake, learn instead to say, "Oops, I made a mistake." In this way, you can begin to move forward with a love for yourself.

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