When you do a dance performance, sometimes you can, of course, make a mistake. Because it’s a performance, you can’t stop the music and begin again. In the moment, there is no do-over. You just have to go with it.
When I participated in a group dance performance, choreographed by Luisa Tanno, she said if you make a mistake, just fully commit to it. It happened that during the performance, blunders were made and we just put our energy into the movement and acted as if those errors were exactly what we meant to do -- and danced on. The audience did not know there was anything amiss and, in fact, loved it. Those mistakes actually looked really good.
When you make a mistake during a performance, just commit to it and make one of these two choices: get back on track when you can or just continue. Either of these can work.
In life, we can make errors of judgment that we realize right in the moment of doing them. We then have two choices: continue in the same vein or stop and admit a mistake has been made. In our lives, we can stop the music and begin again.
When I was growing up, the adults around me would never admit they had made a mistake. Even when I knew that they were sorry, they could never say it. It was almost as if children were not supposed to ever believe that elders could make errors in judgment. I believe that was a 1950’s parenting thing, and pretty common.
However, continuing in those mistakes did not make them look good, despite what they thought.
We’ve all been in situations where we want to hold onto our point of view just because we committed to it, even when we hear that quiet voice in our heads telling us we are in error. We don’t want to back down because we believe that somehow we will lose our power.
The truth is that there is no power in sticking to a position that we know in our heart is wrong.
In a performance, you can brazen out errors and they can be beautiful. In life, brazening out misjudgments is not beautiful or even necessary. Stopping the music and admitting a mistake lets us off the hook and lets everyone involved breathe a sigh of relief.
We all make mistakes, and do-overs can be the best way to do the right thing.