As a mom, I talk about making mistakes all day, every day: at bath time, on the way to school, at Target, in the kitchen.
I have a bank of sayings: “Accidents are preventable;” “Things happen;” “Make mistakes. It’s the only way you learn;” “Be wrong – You’ll learn more;” “You do not learn by being right, learn by being wrong.”
I hope that one day, my two girlies will fiercely stand and face their mistakes in the same way our new favorite character, Wonder Woman, does: with their shields out and their heads held high.
And that goes for mistakes big and small. For example, last week I watched V strap her pink, sparkle, princess Crocs on the wrong feet for the 1000th time. I wonder, DON’T HER FEET HURT?! Yet her belief that her shoes are on the right feet is unshakeable.
I check myself as I reach toward her, wanting to solve her problem quickly and efficiently. But then I remind myself, she won’t always ignore the feeling. She’s 3! And she’s super proud of getting herself dressed in the morning. Every time her shoe lands on the opposite foot, she learns. It’s inevitable.
Mistakes are lessons, not epic failures. They feel awkward. Painful. Beautiful.
Witnessing my daughters’ small mistakes in everyday life has taught me that it is not the mistake that feels excruciating, it is the consequence. It feels like a natural instinct to want to shield my muses from failure, but it is so beautiful to watch them discover and explore, try new things and learn what is right for them. Allowing them to make mistakes encourages them to grow and thrive in the face of adversity.
Just like my girlies, the recognition of mistakes and how to handle them best is what matters. Not too long ago, I sunk myself in debt to participate in styled photo shoots with the most gorgeous wedding stationery brides never hired me for (MASSIVE mistake), while designing a logo here and there.
Eventually, the lack of profit and the desire for a stronger foundation for my business forced me to listen to the most sound advice I didn’t want to hear – stop confusing your audience and focus on becoming a tastemaker and brand designer.
Taking an honest look at my goals and admitting my mistake led me to pivot away from custom event stationery and focus on how strategy and voice translate in brand design. Now I help daring business owners recognize the beauty of their own voice and design brands they can be proud of.
I am paying on the small mountain of money I owe and staying aware that my business needs to grow, just like my girlies, with the openness to make discoveries and explore. I extend myself the same grace I give to V and allow myself to make mistakes with the expectation that I learn from them.
Wonder Woman does not hide from her mistakes. She proudly holds her shield to repel the danger and protect her strength. As my business and my girlies grow together, we will discover what it is like to conquer and take pride in the lessons we’ve learned like Wonder Woman.
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