# 22 on my, 99 Life Tips – A List is: Problems, mistakes, and shortcomings are your friends. How else will you know what to work on so you can grow into a better, more complete version of you?
Everyone makes assumptions. Including you. Some assumptions, if made, are patently absurd, and easily disproven. The assumption that ”all politicians are altruistic and honest” would fall into this camp. One of the assumptions it is safe to make is that you are imperfect and fallible. This is a fine and valuable thing to admit. It is one of those facts that is persistently true irregardless of your admission or belief. Having established that, and assuming fallibility, we must also enter a new relationship with our multiple fauxs(?) pas. I suggest becoming friends with problems, mistakes, and shortcomings as soon as possible after the shock wears off of again finding one of them intruding and imposing itself into your life.
The intensity and duration of the shock is determined by how well you embrace the assumption about your fallibility. The more you accept fallibility, the more you will come to accept it when it rears its ugly head. Your acceptance of imperfection in yourself will inevitably lead to the expectation of imperfection. Thus, the shock, when you prove your assumption correct, will not be as severe. This is not to make excuses for problems, mistakes, and shortcomings. On the contrary, it is simply to reclassify them. These errors, lapses, and struggles are your friends if they can serve as the catalysts and precursors for change and growth.
I am not an advocate, nor a practitioner of strident self-help in a vain attempt at perfection. I have written that some imperfections will follow you through life. And, I believe this to be true. But, character flaws are different. They should not be tolerated. And character flaws become more transparent in the face of problems, mistakes, and shortcomings. How? Because it is adversity that reveals and produces character, not good times and prosperity.
Problems, mistakes, and shortcomings reveal character. They give you a benchmark. You get to see a snapshot in time of the ”real you”, that is, your true current character. Certain character flaws are a magnetic welcome mat for certain problems. If you find yourself facing repeated, cyclical bouts with the same issues, then someone in the universe is trying to give you a clue about what is most in need of fixing. And…giving you multiple opportunities to recognize it, and do something about it.Once again, you’ve arrived at the perfect occasion to ask one of the most important questions you can ever ask yourself, ”Am I okay being like this? STAYING like this???”
Hopefully, you answer yourself correctly and then persevere in whatever appropriate steps are available to you to become the person that can answer, ”Yes, I’m cool with being like this.” when you ask yourself that question. Until then, whenever problems, mistakes, and shortcomings show up, try to recognize them as friends trying to point you in that direction.