This I Believe

Jennifer - Chatsworth, California
Entered on May 18, 2006
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: setbacks

I believe that we must all make mistakes. It is essential for us to make mistakes in order to fully grasp the concept that beneficial experiences stem from us learning how to fix our mistakes. If we never made mistakes, we would never learn how to better ourselves. It’s easy to tell people not to make the same mistakes you have made in the past, but does everyone always follow that advice? Most people don’t follow that advice because they are curious as to what contributes to mistake making. There are multiple meanings of what a mistake can be. A mistake is an error of fault resulting from defective judgment or carelessness. Mistakes can range from a child accidentally spilling milk on the floor as a form of carelessness to a person committing murder as a form of defective judgment. But the mistake I’m talking about is good because it involves a personal experience which later proves to be a vital step in improving my decision to make better judgments. The best advice is to experience the things you want to experience on your own; don’t let someone tell you what to do with your life.

The personal mistake I made was hanging out with the wrong crowd outside of my high school. I attended an all girls private school and I always felt bored with my life. I wanted excitement in my life. I decided to attend parties and soon enough I met people that knew each other and they were accepting of me. I was young and naive, which left me to believe that nothing I possibly do can hurt me. As I started to blend with my new friends, I realized that they weren’t the people I thought they were. I have to admit that they are nice people, but I didn’t appreciate the smoking, drinking, and creating havoc. Actually, I was kind of scared because I wasn’t familiar with these activities. I didn’t want to look so inexperienced so I tried to joke my way out of things; I tried to look “cool”, but I promised myself the only thing I wouldn’t do was smoke. There’s something about smoking that really bugged me. After 3 years of living my life this way, I knew I needed to find a new path in my life. I couldn’t live doing poorly in school, creating a bad relationship with my family, and dealing with all the drama the crowd made me endure. Soon enough I left the crowd for a fresh start.

I believe that my personal mistake has helped me come to the realization that even though I made the wrong friends, I became stronger in being able to be an independent thinker. I think of the mistake as my experience, it’s not something I have to regret. My mistake has brought me more benefits than harm. They include doing well in school so I could have a chance of getting into college, then making my family proud. In my senior year of high school, my grades did go up and even better, I finally found a boyfriend who supported me every step of the way. Life couldn’t get any better. I finally felt proud of what I’ve accomplished. That is why I believe mistakes can help you become a better and stronger person than you already are.