Made a Mistake – That Sinking Feeling

When you don’t feel right about something you said, did, or left undone, does it give you that sinking feeling?  Do you feel all churned up inside, because you know that was not what you intended or wanted to transpire?  You know your standards, your mode of operation, is much higher than that.

It can be a small detail, yet you know it has an impact on others.  It does not fit or feel ‘right’ for who you are.  Then you dwell on it.  It affects everything you are doing.  It colors your mood.  It is hard to shake off.

You take action, because to release the internal quandary you have to do something.  You apologize.  You offer alterative suggestions, actions.  Or you process with due diligence so that you can learn from the experience and hopefully not repeat.

You need to mediate the internal feeling of devastation, inadequacy, self-doubt, disappointment in yourself.  This comes from not acting at the moment, acting ‘incorrectly’, being distracted and then realizing what took place, responding spontaneously and then receiving additional information.  Ahhh, I am smart enough not to be so dumb.   Yes, the perfectionism tendency impacting.  Also, the ethical standards one hold oneself to are impacting.

Have to develop strategies to manage the downward spiral of emotions that this triggers.  First is the feeling, yuck, the pit in my stomach, depressed.  Recognize and then clarify what was the trigger.  Be careful not to over analyze.  Determine what action, if any, is desired and beneficial for all concerned.  Take the action; address the negligence, inconsistency, the error.  Process the scenario and figure out alternative reactions, responses, actions.  This will provide options as you encounter similar situations.

Then breathe!  Know you are not perfect.  You are human.  Mistakes are how we learn.  We fell down many times before we learned to walk.  Let go of guilt, self-doubt, and decease in the self-flagellation.  Honor the experience.


  1. Edith, this sure resonates with me today! Wrote an email the other day, as a response to a business contact that had disappointed me, basically I shouldn’t have sent it…and I proceeded to worry about it. What a surprise when my email “wrote” back to me, having difficulty delivering this message, will keep trying”…and then the next day….”this message cannot be delivered!”
    What a wast of worry eh? But a good lesson, think before you send!

    • Oh, yes the impulsive reactions – the perspective of the moment. Is it unwarranted worry / feelings or is it intuitive guidance? Best to take a deep breath and respond with all of you and all you know then piecemeal.

  2. I have just read all the blogs to this one …..
    Before this one I copied and highlighted a LOT of personally relevant sentences and saved to memory stick to take with me to my first Psychiatrist appt on friday…

    Then I got to this one …and…. I could have written every word myself!


    I am really struggling in life right now but have made the first steps to try and get my life back and find myself again…
    Any advice re support in the U.K would be very greatefully recieved

    And thank-you for making me feel slightly less alone.

    • Jax: You may want to look for the Scanner groups that meet weekly/monthly which are groups from Barbara Sher’s work. Also there are different counselors that specialize in “gifted” adults – not many but some. I am more than glad to assist via virtual connections also. One resource is the free teleclasses offered once a month.

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