Mistakes Are Friends, Part 2

Albert Einstein was not only a brilliant scientist, but also had a wonderful way with words, and is often quoted. One shining example: “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”

I once had a client who was severely distressed because his wife had discovered that he cheated. He moved out, ended the affair, and was staying with a buddy. He saw his wife and children every day. But she was hurt, angry and confused. He desperately wanted her to forgive him – he loved her and the kids and wanted nothing more than to repair the damage he’d done and start over. He repeatedly apologized and begged her to let him prove his remorse, but she neither believed nor trusted him. He didn’t understand that she wasn’t able to forgive him yet, despite his best efforts at convincing her.

I asked him if he had any influence over her feelings and beliefs. I also asked whether it was possible that he was banging his head against a wall by repeatedly trying to convince her. He said in the sorriest voice and with the saddest look you could imagine, “I guess I’m gonna keep banging my head until she believes me.”

This unfortunate man is compounding his distress by not learning from his mistakes, and by continuing to use the same kind of thinking and behavior that didn’t work.

Before we sit in judgment of his choices, let’s ask ourselves whether we, too, have ever failed to learn from our mistakes. And whether we have ever stuck to an ineffective plan when it proved its ineffectiveness, over and over.

There’s this expression, called “thinking outside the box.” This example can serve as a great illustration of the need to think outside the box, in order to uncover a solution to a seemingly impossible problem.

Have you ever wondered how this works, this thing called thinking outside the box? And are you curious about how you can make it work for you? If so, please call me at 219 309 3928 for a free consult. This could lead to a fascinating conversation!