Covering Up Your Mistakes

They say that to err is human. We all make mistakes, but we all seem to deal with them in different ways. Some people may feel inclined to cover up their mistakes, possibly for fear of embarrassment or punishment, but this may not be the best approach for you to take. The problem with covering up your mistakes is that it can oftentimes lead to even more covering-up for the original cover-up.

The net result is very little in terms of valuable substance and a whole lot in terms of useless fluff that serves no purpose other than to cover up the original error.

Truth, Lies, and Audio Tape

This is the same phenomenon that happens with deceit and lying. You may tell a little white lie to an acquaintance, saying that you cannot attend a certain event for one reason or another, but then you may find yourself needing to perpetuate that little white lie with additional lies. For example, you may say that you have a wedding to attend and then they may follow up with you down the road to ask about the wedding. You have to make up an elaborate story.

Realistically, the easiest story for you to remember is the truth. When you cover up a mistake that you’ve made, you are effectively telling a lie to everyone around you. This is not only dishonest and possibly unethical, but it can make your life more difficult than what it’s worth.

Your Mistakes Are Your Mistakes

For this and for so many other reasons, the best strategy that you can take when you happen to screw up is to own up to your mistakes. Acknowledge that an error was made and accept responsibility for any inconveniences that your mistake may have caused.

Just as you should take credit for your successes, it is only fair that you take credit for your failures as well. But that’s not where it should stop.

Moving Forward

When you make a mistake, you should acknowledge it and make apologies as necessary, but it is also up to you to look ahead to the future to see how you can overcome the error that was made. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to look back and “fix” the problem that you may have caused. It does mean, however, that you should learn from the misstep and strive to do better in the future.

We face challenges and make mistakes each and every day. That’s an expected part of the human condition. The key is knowing how to own your mistakes and move on.