I have already made a mistake that cannot be undone

Napoleon Hill in Think and Grow Rich lists 30 reasons for failure that hold people back. Out of all of them, there is only one that it is impossible for an individual to change and even that is something that it is possible to overcome with the support of others. It was not even a mistake in the way that we understand it. He described that reason for failure as an unfavourable hereditary background that meant that someone was born with what he called a deficiency in brainpower.

One of his reasons for failure was ill health. Our health largely depends on how well we take care of our bodies. Poor eating habits, wrong thinking and lack of exercise are all well-known causes of illness. We might not be able to undo the effect of these but we can pause, take stock of the situation and work to improve it.

Is it really a mistake or can we use our experience to help others?

Some of us believe that we have made mistakes in the areas of sexual relationships or marriage or family relationship that stop us from going forwards. Others of us could have made poor choices live becoming involved in criminal activity or gambling, or become dependent on drugs or alcohol. In many of these situations, we cannot go back in time to change the situation but we can, with the help and support of others, recover and make a fresh start.

Often it is those of us who have made a mistake and recovered from it who are the best people to provide support for people who are facing those struggles in the present. Often it is those who have been through a struggle who have been made stronger by it. Remember that the butterfly becomes stronger and better able to face its future because it has to fight and struggle out of the chrysalis. Those that don’t have to struggle are left weak and less able to survive. Our mistakes can leave us stronger than we were before.

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