During a recent meeting with the CEO of a local nonprofit for women, I asked her what was the biggest obstacle she had to overcome in her career and how she did it. Without missing a beat, she shared that there weren’t any obstacles, only “unplanned learning opportunities.” Come again?
She went on to explain that she’d also erased the word “mistake” from her vocabulary. Because, as she said, “there’s no such thing as mistakes, only lessons.” Now, I don’t know about you, but I’ve certainly had my fair share of mistakes throughout my career and each time, I reacted as though the world was ending.
For a Type-A perfectionist like me, the idea of banishing the word “mistakes” and letting go of the word “obstacles” was truly revolutionary. But it’s really about perspective.
After all, we may not be able to control situations that happen to us, but we can decide how we react. So I’m going to ask you right now: Is what you’re going through an obstacle or an opportunity? The choice is yours.