“Yes I’ve put that in my ‘stuff up’ folder” was the reply as we discussed a small error that one of my team had just made. Now the error the person had made was on a task they had never done before, (ever!) and hadn’t been trained for, but they labelled it a stuff up.
Immediately I replied you shouldn’t be calling it a ‘stuff up folder’. A ‘learning’s folder’ maybe or a ‘helpful notes’ folder, but when you use the term ‘stuff up’ you tell your brain that you failed.
We do this often as human beings. Use destructive language on ourselves. By tagging it as a ‘stuff up’ we run the risk of telling ourselves a story of failure and if that goes too far, we become scared of risk and trying new things.
There are of course many forms of ‘stuff ups’
I always do that wrong…
I’m useless at …
I could never …
Sometimes they are really valid.
But often they are phrases we need to single out for what really they are, and intentionally replace with positive statements. And by doing so, we take better care of our brain, and free ourselves up to learn more.