Are you struggling to move on from past mistakes? Many leaders in the trades find themselves in this position at some point in their careers. It can be difficult to let go of what's happened and focus on the future, but it's essential for your continued success. This month, I’m sharing some tips on how to move forward despite past mistakes. Let it be known I’m using the word “mistakes” in this month’s column, but I don’t personally believe in mistakes. I only believe in results. You either got the result you desired or you didn’t, period. Either way, there is a lesson to be learned when you look at the situation closely.

First, take some time to reflect on what happened. Think about the circumstances that led to your mistake and how you can avoid making the same one in the future. When reflecting on past mistakes, it’s important to be honest with yourself and accept responsibility for your actions. This will help you learn from the experience and move forward more confidently.

Second, make a plan for moving forward. It's essential that you have a strategy in place so you can stay focused and motivated while working towards success in spite of any setbacks or challenges that might come your way. Consider setting new goals and objectives, creating a timeline for achieving them, and developing actionable steps that will help you get there.

Third, seek out mentors and advisors who can help you move forward. It's important to surround yourself with wisdom in this industry so you can make decisions based on sound advice. Don’t just go with the first person you see on social media, however. These mentors, advisors, and coaches should be people that you trust, respect and admire for their own success in this business.

Finally, forgive yourself. Making mistakes is part of life. Everyone does it at one point or another. To truly move forward from past mistakes, you must forgive yourself for what happened and accept that it's over now - no matter how painful the experience may have been.

Remember that everyone makes mistakes — the key is learning from them. Below are some action items for you to take immediately after making a mistake.

Acknowledge your mistakes and learn from them

Making mistakes is a natural part of life, and as humans, we should embrace them. Acknowledging our mistakes helps us learn from them and educate ourselves on how to act differently in future scenarios. By reflecting on the error and finding ways to adjust our behavior, it is possible to learn and grow from each experience. Mistakes can contain valuable lessons that teach us more about ourselves, so let's accept our shortcomings with humility and use them to become better versions of ourselves.

Forgive yourself for your mistakes — you are only human

Mistakes are part of life and learning, so forgiving yourself is essential. It can be hard to forgive yourself and accept the choices you make, especially when they don't turn out as planned. However, it's important that we learn to be gentle with ourselves and allow room for error. The next time you slip up, remind yourself that it's ok and forgive yourself so that you can continue pushing through on your journey. By forgiving yourself, you will grow more resilient and empower yourself to accept where you are without judgment.

Focus on the present and the future, not dwelling on the past

It's easy to let our past experiences weigh us down, but it's also equally important to let go of those memories. Focus instead on the present and future. Although we can learn from our mistakes and reflect on how we got there, focusing on yesterday will not help propel us forward. Instead, it is important to focus on the possibilities of what could come today and what we have yet to achieve tomorrow. When we let go and turn our attention to where we are now and where we can be, we open ourselves up to new growth potential, allowing us to move with purposeful intent toward our goals.

Set goals for yourself and strive to reach them

Setting goals for ourselves, no matter how small or large can be an incredibly beneficial exercise that can help us grow as individuals. It is never too late to set goals, and it can be a great way to stay motivated on the path of self-improvement. What's more, having goals gives us something to strive for and make progress towards, making any journey of development even more fun and engaging. Ultimately, goals are an essential tool that we should all use to keep growing and making the most out of life.

Let it be known I’m using the word “mistakes” in this month’s column, but I don’t personally believe in mistakes. I only believe in results. You either got the result you desired or you didn’t, period. Either way, there is a lesson to be learned when you look at the situation closely.

Be positive and optimistic about the future — believe in yourself

Understanding the value of belief and staying positive about the future is key to achieving success. We all have something unique that we can bring to the world, and if we embrace this belief, our potential is limitless. It's important to stay optimistic and excited about what lies ahead in our lives. When something difficult arises, use it as an opportunity instead of a setback. Having belief in yourself will open so many doors, giving you a chance to benefit both yourself and others. Unlock your potential by believing in yourself — be positive and optimistic about the future!

Take action toward making your dreams a reality

The journey toward making your dreams a reality starts now. Taking massive action is essential to progress and growth, however, don't become discouraged if it takes time for the results to manifest — focus on the process over perfection. Reflecting on the positive experiences associated with actively working towards your goals can be immensely beneficial. Find enjoyment in taking baby steps forward and celebrating small wins. Ultimately, understanding that massive action leads to massive results and embracing the adventure of self-growth will bring you closer to living those dreams out loud.

Mistakes are a part of life as well as leadership, and it's important to be forgiving of ourselves when we make them. Rather than dwelling on the past, it's important to focus on the present and set goals for our future. It’s not enough just to dream about what we hope for the future; we need to take action to make those dreams come true. Believe in yourself and be optimistic about your future — if you stay focused and motivated, you can achieve great things. Don't forget that it's completely normal to stumble along the way. Just acknowledge your mistakes, learn from them, forgive yourself, and keep moving forward. The journey toward becoming your greatest self is worth the effort, so act now and enjoy the process!