Once upon a time in life, I found it hard to laugh at myself when I made silly mistakes in front of others. The very thought of people laughing AT me was like bombs bursting in air. (Excuse the National Anthem reference, which is a serious topic for a future post.)
I’m guessing that some of you can relate to situations when people have laughed at you too. Even the smartest among us are capable of making silly mistakes. It’s something that happens, but it’s not the end of the world when or if it does.
When I was a senior in high school, I remember making one of my many silly mistakes that caused others to laugh at me—for days. I was leading the entire school, as I did every day, in the Pledge of Allegiance and had one of those “oops” moments when I inadvertently said the final words of The Lord’s Prayer at the end of the Pledge.
This is what I said:
“I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” However, instead of saying “with liberty and justice for all,” I said, “with the power, and the glory, forever.”
Thank goodness, it wasn’t something more serious, but that was the day 1,100 students and teachers laughed at me. It took a few days before I was able to walk in the halls between classes without hearing giggles from other students.
You’re probably laughing at me right now for even writing this post, but I’m okay if you are. You see, I learned valuable life lessons from that infamous Pledge day.
The lessons I learned were:
– It’s okay to laugh at yourself, and I have—more times than I care to count.
– When you learn to laugh at yourself, others aren’t laughing AT you. They are laughing WITH you.
– If you can’t laugh at yourself when you make silly mistakes in front of others, it would be wise not to laugh at others who do such things. ‘Karma’ has a way of getting even.
I hope this simple post made you think of some of your embarrassing moments, and if it also made you smile, that’s win-win for both of us.
Should you happen to make a silly mistake today, laugh so others can laugh WITH you! You just might bring a little joy into someone’s life if you do.
Have a great day!
Tom Tatum – Author – 2016
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