One of the follies of youth is the belief once the mistake has been made, it can’t get any worse.
And it frequently does.
The only way to make sure that does not happen is to accept immediate responsibility for the situation. The moment you start making excuses, or try to avoid consequences, or try to blame someone else, you are CHOOSING to set into motion a whole range of events that quickly escalate way beyond the worst case scenario.
When your car keys have disappeared into the knee deep mud, there comes a point where you realize you are going to have to roll up your pants and wade on in. There is no way to retrieve the keys, and remain pristine and clean. You can hate it, you can fight it, you can pretend it doesn’t matter, but if you are going to find the keys and be able to drive home, you are going to have to eventually wade through the mud . . . no matter how long you manage to put it off.
Life is like that. The fastest way through difficult situations is often to stop fighting the obvious, accept where you are and do the hard stuff. You will be a better person because of it and the people around you are going to be a lot more willing to help out when they see you trying. The mistake is not the big deal. It really isn’t. And neither is the initial reaction of the people around you. If you are going to smash up your dad’s car, he is going to be angry. It is a car. It cost a lot of money. There are consequences for him beyond your immediate understanding. That is human nature.
It is what happens after the event and the reaction that matters. How do you act? How do you handle the consequences? How do you treat the people you have wronged? What do you do that shows you made a mistake and not a life choice? Many successful people can tell you the story of when they turned their lives around. Life is going to be full of mistakes and problems. It is what we do with them that defines our character. Many times they are the events that get our attention, stop us dead in our tracks, and make us rethink our actions. Many times we are lucky that the outcome was not far worse than it was.
The people you are reacting most strongly against are probably the people saying the things you already know to be true. You don’t like hearing it. These are the often the people that love us enough to do the right thing even if it risks their relationship with you. The people who are telling you what you want to hear are probably the people least likely to be there for you in tough times. It’s easy to say the things that our friends want to hear, especially when we don’t really care about them. Think about it. Look beyond the next five minutes of your life and don’t make a bad situation worse, simply because you hate that you got caught doing the wrong thing. Most of us cannot afford to throw away the few people in our lives who really love and care about us.