Making mistakes creates a treasure trove of information and opportunity for us to discover a way to achieve our goals. However it takes courage to allow variations and give ourselves permission to play.
For most of us the belief that mistakes are bad is deeply ingrained and we are embarrassed when we don’t do something right. We feel smaller when we mess up. In our effort to avoid embarrassment we often learn an acceptable way of doing things and then we stick to it.
However our brains are not prewired to do what we do. Instead we are self-correcting systems that require lots of curiosity and experimentation in order to have all we need to achieve our goals. So it is often our mistakes, which bring sudden, unexpected change, and provide us with the variation we need to wake up our brains.
The Feldenkrais Method suggests that we don’t avoid mistakes or try to do it ‘right’ as the ideas that arise can inform both practice and performance.
If every experience feels, looks and seems the same our brains will have nothing to work with and we will have no choice but to repeat ourselves…and repeat ourselves…. and repeat ourselves So it seems that the greater and more challenging the goal, the more room we need for mistakes and self-correction.
The history of science is filled with examples of major breakthroughs that came about through apparent mistakes that forced people to step outside what they thought they knew.