Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Do you let people make mistakes?

Made a mistake last night. Kinda a biggie. I had 4-5 of my young women in the car, and went to change lanes to the left, and someone was in my blind spot. To say I didn't see him is putting it mildly. I checked my mirror more than once, and was focused on the car behind him. I must not have turned my head at all. The sun was going down on that side, so maybe that was why? Sun in my eyes? The poor guy moved into the turning lane and stopped completely, while I moved into a construction zone, and was trapped between cones for a mile. I must have RUINED his day. I didn't hit him --no thanks to me. My young women were a little traumatized, but bowling at BYU for an hour or two and they seemed fine. So, here's my question: we all screw up right? How do we move past it?

I did this catering job with my friend a few yeas ago, and screwed up the planning. We ran out of two side dishes and a salad. We blamed the hogging vegetarians, but I know it was my fault, because the numbers I gave to my friend to prepare were just plain wrong. I hadn't done anything but reception catering for years, and a dinner is a different animal. I swear I had post traumatic stress syndrome for a couple of weeks over that one. I kept looking in the oven that night, but there was just no more food in it. I ended up going to Macaroni Grill and buying some pilafs, and salads and serving those. I kept crying in church even, because it seemed like forgiveness from Heavenly Father wouldn't even help. At least when you sin, you can get forgiveness and be clean, but a screw-up?

One way that helps me to get past these times, is to let everyone else make mistakes. I had another catering job last summer, and wanted to use a local bakery for the pitas. They couldn't get them right, but I remembered my mistakes and kept giving them the chance to get it right. I kept bringing in examples, and asking them to try different things, and had high hopes, but have to admit, finally the day was upon us, and when I picked them up I was disappointed. they worked, but just barely. Still, it helps me feel better knowing I gave them the chance to make it right. I don't know if my client agrees....but I REALLY want people to succeed after they've made a mistake. I really want to believe it can make you better at what you do. I feel like I became a very careful caterer after my fiasco, and I hope I can become a much better driver after last night.

I read an article last year in Time about Hillary that profiled some huge mistakes she'd made as Secretary of State (I hope I finally got the right link) doing probably the hardest job in the world --negotiating middle east peace talks. They kinda jumped all over her and it made me sad. I didn't vote for her, but I've gotta say I've always admired her. Sue me. Anyway, the headlines this morning looked so good --she had a great sound bite: "This is the time, these are the leaders". Maybe she's pulling something off over there. I'm rooting for her.


Erin Earley said...

You are right. When I remember that I am far from perfect it makes me go easier on other imperfect people and love more. I agree about Hillary though, I didn't vote for her and didn't want to see her as president but she has guts and goes for what she wants. That's something to admire.

belann said...

I am so far from perfect I am always routing for the underdog. It is just hard not to be perfect when you are a perfectionist. I've been a Hillary fan for a long time. I actually did vote for her.

Terry Earley said...

I admire you and Hillary. You both keep going and going, working through the mistakes and getting to the victories when the time is right.

-Now you just have to work on the crying thing.

Stacy said...

"To er is human" we all do, you are amazing. Don't beat yourself up over it, no one was hurt. When I have a close call, it freaks me out and gets the blood pumping. (darn those blind spots).

Lee said...

You worry more then anyone I know. I would have stopped thinking about then by the time I got home. I guess that is what makes you the bomb :)