I Want a “Do-Over”

We all make mistakes or get results that are less than what we expected. It’s all too easy to get lost in trying to fix or overcome mistakes. Sometimes it’s okay to just let them be. Let me share an example.

Fall is a busy season for most of us. Often, new programming launches. And then settles into a seasonal rhythm. Only problem is “settling in” doesn’t happen overnight. For me it has been initiating new projects, starting homeschooling and launching a podcast. Just a few of the big things on my plate that sent my “busy” into hyper drive. 

Last week I recorded a podcast with my co-host about “navigating hard seasons”. Except when I was done with the podcast, I wasn’t happy with my “presentation”. In the days that followed, I dwelt on recording a “do-over”. But, the whole point of the episode was to get real on navigating hard seasons so a “do-over” felt contradictory.

I don’t like to talk about struggles when I’m in them. I prefer to wait until I am through, then reflect back the nuggets of learning. In this case we were being intentional to record this episode while my co-host and I were experiencing the messiness rather than waiting to get  on the “other side”. When the mistakes, the unanswered questions, and the lack of a clear “nugget” did not meet my expectations for the final recording, I was ready to throw the original away, call it a mistake and pick something less messy. I’m so glad I paused to re-listen to the recording. As I tuned in, I realized that it is in the midst of the mess and vulnerability that the nuggets of truth surface. 

So, what has this taught me? 

  1. Let it Be: Sometimes it’s okay to let go and let the “mistake” just sit there. Maybe because it is already good enough. Maybe because it makes you real. Maybe because it gives permission to others to be vulnerable with their mistakes too. 
  2. What Really Matters: Sometimes we put too much effort, time and energy into fixing a mistake that doesn’t really matter to anyone else. We might need to stop being so hard on ourselves, accept our humanity and move on.
  3. Let Go to Grow: Sometimes granting grace for mistakes or achieving less than expected for ourselves or for others can actually be an opportunity to learn and grow that stretches us and our teams.

Different situations do call for different things. Some mistakes you can’t let go and need to address quickly and a “do-over” is truly necessary. Often, though, we set the bar too high for ourselves as well as others and limit the opportunity to grow and flourish.

Next Steps

  1. Keep the conversation going . . . what are your learnings as you navigate this busy season?
  2. Check out the inspiration I received to embrace the mistake and give myself grace from my podcast interview with Jeannette Grace on our Side by Side Podcast. Check it out on Apple, Spotify, Google or our Website.

Want to catch the podcast first hand? Tune into the conversation “Navigating Hard Seasons” that dropped this week on Apple, Spotify, Google or our Website.

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Annie Perdue Olson

Annie is founder of Leading Better Together, guiding leaders through the relationship and people challenges that sidetrack ministry. With 20+ years of experience in nonprofit management and pastoral ministry she equips people and teams to work better together. She holds a Master of Arts in Human Resources and Change Leadership from St. Thomas University and received her coaching certification from the Center of Coaching Excellence.

2 Comments

  1. Sarah-Jane VandenBerg on October 9, 2020 at 11:54 am

    Thanks for your openness Annie! I appreciate “let go to grow”.

    • Annie Perdue Olson on October 9, 2020 at 12:16 pm

      Thank you! Oh it is hard for me to learn to let go, but growth is a good goal.

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