Too err is human. All of us makes mistakes, small or big doesn’t matter. But, if we start to make the second mistake, then it becomes our habit, and like every other bad habit, making a second mistake is a detrimental habit.
When it comes to bringing in good habits by saying good bye to the bad habits, small one time mistakes do not matter in the long-run. Instead, it is the second mistake that is far more significant. Let’s talk about why this is true.
Missing any single day of a particular habit has rarely any bad effect on your long-term ability to stick to the habit. Making a mistake once in a while and slipping up does not change the long-term outcome if you find a way to get back on track.
As we said at the outset, everyone makes mistakes. We skip our lunch, or may be breakfast, or work out, or anything which is essential for once, but if we keep repeating the same, it becomes a habit.
What differentiates the elite performers from everyone else? Not perfection, but consistency. This is why the most important thing is not to prevent mistakes at all, but to avoid making a mistake twice in a row. Errors are part of the process and the journey, but they shouldn’t become a pattern. One mistake is just an outlier. Two mistakes is the beginning of a pattern. To not let this pattern happen it is important to learn how to get back on track quickly.
Here are some of the strategies for getting back on track quickly and avoiding repeated mistakes.
- Start the Good Behaviour: If you forget to practice a new habit, you might convince yourself that you will do that practice twice next time and cover for today’s miss. But, this approach never works, the best approach is to release the focus on results and direct your energy toward getting started. Don’t worry about having a fantastic performance next time. Just focus on getting back into the swing of things.
- Set a Schedule:Many people never get around to building new habits because they always think that they will start when they would feel completely motivated to do that. It rarely happens, you need to get up and take motivation out of the equation and set a schedule for your behaviour. This works well, because of the science of implementation intentions.
- Eliminate the things that take you off track.Obviously some emergencies can’t be avoided, but there are many daily distractions that can happen and take you off track. If you find yourself missing a habit, then take a moment to find out why that happened today. Just examine your day with open eyes and determine what took you off track. Once you begin to discover the things that take you off the track, you can eliminate them. Improving by subtracting is the key.
- Religiously Follow Your Routine: To do well in any new skill, or art or anything which you think is important to you shouldn’t be put on the back seat. You should set up a reminder alarm for the same, and follow your practice session religiously without fail.
- Monitor Your Progress: You want to track your progress when you are working on something, and that applies to this one as well. Don’t forget to monitor your progress, this will also give you a perspective of how much more effort you need to put in to reach your goal in your decided time frame.
- Don’t Stop: Last but very important, do not stop. There is no alternative to success. You can’t leave your dream mid-way for anything else. When you find it little difficult just think of the day when you would be successful, what would you feel like, what your friends and your family will feel for you. How society would recognise you. And you will be back on track.
You never make the same mistake twice. the second time you make it, it is no longer a mistake, it is a choice.
Also published on Medium.