I Made A Terrible Mistake

Have you ever felt horrible because of your own behavior, after you already did it?

You can’t take it back. You can’t change it. It happened.

And then the thought….I will never, ever, ever let that happen again. I will never do that again. Ever.

Humans have all different kinds of qualities they feel terrible about showing to the world.

Snapping at strangers, firey anger, vicious words at someone you love, addictive behaviors….

….or perhaps you’ve found your tears, sobbing, neediness, clinging, or desperation to be the most horrible quality you could reveal.

I will never, ever be needy. I will never cling or grab or reach for attention, love, or approval. Ick.

But let’s say you did want someone’s love, you wanted something to go your way, you made a scene.

One of the best ways I’ve found to work with self-inquiry on feeling embarrassed, wrong and humiliated….

….is to really deeply be with the scene that created the uncomfortable trait to come alive inside you in the first place.

A memory:

I walk up the pathway to the elegant, stately old house with happy and excited energy running through my torso. I’ve chosen a gorgeous shirt in a beautiful deep blue color, sexy jeans, delicate and feminine high-heeled sandals. I’ve put on make-up, the perfect amount of mascara, frosted lipstick, hoop earrings.

I like the man who lives here. I think we might officially call ourselves “dating” now.

He’s invited me to dinner at his home, after many meals out, and getting to know him for awhile as part of a educational group we’re both enrolled in.

Last night….was a big deal.

In the hotel at a conference we both attended, I spent the night with him. It was thrilling, sensual, hot.

I was smitten.

And now, the very next evening, with visions of last night replaying over and over with a thrill….I’m invited for dinner, at his house!!

He answers the door looking dashing, and I hug him and he smiles but seems a little preoccupied. He takes my hand and leads me to the full chef gourmet kitchen and shows me the meal he’s cooking himself for us, a Thai feast.

And then.

“That was so interesting last night. I now get the meaning of Friends With Benefits.”

My heart collapses, a surge goes through my whole system. My stomach clenches.

I’m choking down the urge to cry. I will not cry, can’t show I’m shocked. I’m breathing shallowly, the feelings in my chest are churning.

Oh. That’s how it is. Oh.

I stay awhile, make light conversation, then say that I’m not feeling that great for some reason, make excuses, I’m sorry, then leave. He’s super casual, saying we can take a rain check, no big deal.

I will never, ever do that again. I will never let that happen, ever. I’m too trusting, too needy, I make assumptions. I’m a loser.

Is that true?

Deep breath.

No. I’ve worried about it being true, but I can’t really know it is.

How do you react when you believe you made a mistake? That there’s something wrong with you? That you shouldn’t have done it.

Horrified, ashamed.

Focused on that other person, in this case the man, and seeing ME through HIS eyes (the vision is awful).


Who would you be without that thought, that you made a mistake…or that he made one either?

Without the belief that something went wrong, that you have to make sure it doesn’t happen again?

Last night the Year of Inquiry group worked the thought, “I don’t fulfill my promises.”

Same stressful principle. I screwed up.

Turn the thought around: I will always, always let that happen again. I will make a mistake, blunder, make assumptions again. Definitely. I will accept that I am sometimes needy. I will probably cling or grab or reach for attention, love, or approval. Hooray!


Yes, hooray. Why not?

I’m a human being. So are you. Being human.


“When someone says the world is a terrible place, he becomes the champion of suffering, projecting that there’s something wrong here, something less than beautiful.” ~ Byron Katie

That includes you saying you are terrible….why not be simply, you. With flaws.

With a completely different tone and feeling inside, I say to the man now, looking back on that scene….

….”Oh! That’s how it is! Oh! How thrilling! Thank you so much for telling me the truth! The adventure continues!”

And actually, that IS what really happened.

I just didn’t realize it right away.

Maybe you haven’t realized how the mistake you made, that dumb thing you thought or did, was just perfect for what needed to happen next.

Much love, Grace


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