If you want to get back on track after one or a few slip-ups, two big steps are required. First, you have to face your errors. Second you require forgiveness.
Our brains are pretty powerful at putting up fog to keep us from really seeing our mistakes (until they wake us up at 3AM!). Finding a way to blow the fog away and acknowledge the truth is vital.
Then, to be able to move forward, we require forgiveness. Sometimes from an outside source (boss, partner, child) but always from ourselves.
Without forgiving ourselves, we become paralyzed, unable to continue. The fog comes back in and we decide to ignore the problem, rationalize why we don’t need to solve it, or just move in a different direction.
Everyone makes mistakes. Everyone comes up short. Everyone needs to go through this process.
As educators, it is important that we become experts at facilitating these two steps. We can help dissipate the fog (in a gentle way) so our students can see their errors. And we can start them on the path to self-forgiviness by forgiving our students their errors.
If our ultimate goal is to see all of our students to succeed, then we must help our students successfully navigate this process. Empower them to see their mistakes. Empower them to forgive themselves and move forward.