Skip to main content

I Don't Believe In Mistakes

Author of


What is a mistake? Are they even real?

I’m old enough to have experienced many things good, bad, and ugly. I’m also old enough to have heard from many others both younger and older, that they wouldn’t change a thing.

Of course, that is typically only said after enough time has passed or when looking at some specific event. If asked whether you honestly would change ANYTHING in your life, the majority of us might say something like: “Well, I guess I’d change this, that, and definitely THAT.”

But in the grand scheme of things, we eventually realize that how we react to our perceived failures and mistakes is much more important than the actual mistake itself. In fact, most events we feel are mistakes in that moment, end up being a very necessary step we needed to take for any hopes of growth or improvement.


#1 Take a Step Back and a Deep Breath

I challenge anyone who has the time to read a blogpost on the internet like this one, to slow down, take a deep breath, and think of what you still have in this present moment… Take a step back and try to see the forest for the trees. No matter how bad it may seem, at the very least, you still have your breath and consciousness if you can read or hear this.

Once you feel you are more in touch with this present moment, try to remember the mistakes you made last year on this day and the year before that. The odds are that most of you cannot remember those days. If there are any actions you made on this date through time, then all it really means it that those actions are actually a big part of what makes you who you are today. No more or less than that.


#2 Growing Pains

Even if we do not limit our past experiences to this specific date, we all will have one thing in common from the mistakes in our past: We were able to have grown from it and have moved past it, or are in the process of moving past it.

How do I know this is true for everyone? Because whenever you feel like something in your life may have been a mistake, and it was a big enough of a mistake to remember it, then if you are faced with a similar obstacle or choice in the future, you will take another path. That path may not be the “correct” path for you in the end, but it will without a doubt be slightly different than the one you chose before. And odds are, it will be at least 1% better than the path you chose the first time you were confronted with that similar issue.

I myself, and sadly my wife as well, can kick ourselves silly and cry until we are red, blue, then purple in the face over how painful it was to spend 12 years trying various infertility treatments, spending over $100,000 in savings on it, living at home to save and throw more money at a problem that science never figured out a way to solve, and in the end left us bankrupt and quite depressed.

But if those things never happened, I would not be here writing this right now. I would not have published a book. I would not have moved to Japan and would have never found any peace in a life I did not believe existed.

I still am not fully at peace and doubt I ever will be. I still get angry. I still get depressed.

But… I think I’m slowly, and surely, acquiring wisdom and working for a better life. Maybe 1% each year. Okay, maybe 1% each 5 years… but it's there!

Scroll to Continue

#3 How Cliche

We all hear the same motivational ideas over and over again. But keep in mind that phrases that are repeated, are often repeated for a good reason: Most of them hold universal truths that stand the test of time. We don’t hear ideas like “Drink your own urine!” Unless you watch the movie Dodgeball at least once a day. And even when we do hear those ideas, the majority of us would either reject them, shudder in disgust, or laugh at the audacity. I hope so, anyway…

But the motivational messages of “Don’t give up!” “Keep working to get better!” “Learn from your mistakes!” “Just do it!” are there whenever you want them.

To add another to the pile, here’s another cliché idea that I believe is true: The only time you ever truly make a mistake is when you do not improve or learn from the event that you feel is a mistake or failure. So, never be scared to make any mistakes or failures unless you are certain that improvements or learning is an actual impossibility.


Conclusion: Our Path Is Our Own, for Good or for Worse

We can’t fully control any outcomes nor take charge of everything in our life. So, we may never get the results we plan and work towards each day. But there is one truth for all of us: the path we walk is one of our own making. We are all in charge of which paths we forge and continue to take in our life.

So, to whoever may be reading this, I just want to tell you: You got this.

It may take longer than you thought. It may be more excruciatingly painful than you ever imagined. It may not be exactly what you were hoping for. But you will choose your path that keeps you going forward. And if you do not give up, you WILL take one step closer to the life you are aiming for.



I hope these thoughts are helpful. Thank you so much for reading. I Agape-Love you all.

Until next time, God bless.

This post is based off of my 5 Minutes of Failure video series

For those of you who cannot read, <-- click here.

© 2022 BK Johnsen

Related Articles