None of us will make it through life without committing a series
of mistakes or errors in judgment.

I know I have made my share. Mistakes are a part of life.

I don't mind making them, however I don't want to keep repeating
the same ones over and over.

Some of them have been very costly and downright embarrassing.

Let me share with you one of my biggest mistakes, and more
importantly, let me share with you the valuable lesson I learned
from it.

It was 1997. I had worked my way out of poverty and had grown
my business from a $100 investment into a $200,000 a year

I had learned how to make money, but had no clue how to manage

An acquaintance of mine, we'll call her Joni, mentioned to me
that she was buying a lot of shares of a particular stock, with
the expectation that it would soon split or triple in price
within a few months. She told me she was investing her life
savings into buying as much as she could and that I should do
the same.

I thought about it, and at the time, I was saving money to buy my
mom a new house so I thought, hey if I took the $30,000 I had
saved up and bought the stock - and it tripled, that would be
$90,000. Great move, right? (Mistake #1)

Well obviously I had never purchased stocks before and I had no
idea how to do it. So what did I do?

I heard my UPS guy, (yes, my UPS guy) invested in stocks so I
asked him how to buy stocks. He told me to go to XXX broker in
town (who shall remain nameless) and open an account. (Mistake

So I went to the broker, whom eagerly helped me open an account
and he completed the transaction that bought me $30,000 of this
particular stock. (Mistake #3)

Within a few months, the stock had plummeted and went from
$30,000 down to $400. That's not a typo, it had gone down to

I was sick about it. I was incredibly disappointed in myself.

I was upset with the other parties who guided me to create that
outcome. I had every reason to be angry. I felt cheated. I
mean, I later learned the broker broke the law and never should
have placed such a large order for a first time client. They
are not supposed to allow beginners to take such large risks.

I had every reason to blame everyone else for what had happened.

But I learned a very valuable lesson during that time and it has
served me ever since.

I want to share it with you because I want you to pause and think
about this the next time you experience a challenge, a difficulty
or a problem in life, especially when you are tempted to blame
everyone and everything around you.

Here is the lesson.

You always have a choice.

You see, I could have looked at that situation from a "Nail in
My Coffin" perspective: ie "those people did me wrong and it's
their fault," and "I'll never buy another stock again"


I could have looked at it as a "Catalyst for Change"
perspective. ie "I am responsible. I made the decisions, I
didn't do my diligent research, I invested too much on my first
trade, I will take a step back and re evaluate my approach next

Let me simplify it and break it down even further:

Problem: lost $29,600 in stock trade

My Choices:

Nail in Coffin = I am a Victim and I give my power away when I
blame others


Catalyst for Change = I emerge the Victor because I claim my power
to change the present and the future by taking responsibility

You see, I could have easily put the blame on everyone else.
And if I did that, I would never have learned the lesson. I
would have never changed. Though it wasn't easy, after looking at
it, I knew there were a number of things I could have done

Whenever you focus blame outside of yourself, you give your
power away.

Whenever you take responsibility, you claim your ability to
change, grow, and create different outcomes in the future.

I knew that despite the appearance of the circumstances, that I
was responsible for that loss. I made a series of errors in
judgment, as well intentioned as they were.

As long as you blame others outside yourself, you will not
change. Nothing will change for you. You will be doomed to
repeat the same mistakes.

You always have a choice.

Liberate yourself by taking responsibility for your actions,
even when you can justify placing it outside yourself.

Let your mistakes serve you.

Learn from them, let them change you for the better.

Let them empower you.

I turned one of my biggest mistakes into one of my greatest
lessons and by taking 100% responsibility, I allowed it to serve
me. I took back my power.

I used as a catalyst for positive change.

"Every problem contains within it the seed of an equal or greater
opportunity. Not just some of the time, but all of the time." -Jill Koenig

The facts remained the same, I still lost $ 29,600.

But it doesn't hurt anymore.

My perspective on it changed.

It became a blessing that has served me many times over.

When you change the way you look at things, the things you look
at change.

Live Your Dreams

Author's Bio: 

Jill Koenig, the "Goal Guru" is America's Top Goal Strategist.
A best selling Author, Coach and Motivational Speaker, she is
an expert on the subjects of Goal Setting, Time Management and
Business Success. Her Goal in life is to help you UNLEASH your
untapped potential. Get your FREE Goal Setting CD at:

Media Requests: Jill Koenig is a dynamic high energy tv and
radio guest available for interviews and corporate speaking