Don't let the Out-takes of Life Take You Out!
One of my favourite things I like
to watch are the bloopers and outtakes that are shown of mistakes made
during the making of a movie. Most DVD’s have a section of outtakes to
be viewed, and often they will set me off laughing, especially when you
know what was supposed to happen.
In one sense
it seems strange to laugh at other people’s mistakes, and yet we all do
it, and our enjoyment is not usually of malicious intent. We laugh
because we can all relate and identify how much part of being human such
all make mistakes, and have many bloopers and outtakes in a lifetime.
Some of them may be funny like movie bloopers, a stupid mistake and we
are able to laugh at our selves. Other outtakes in life, however, are
not funny, and are neither unforeseen nor self imposed. I am referring
to the tragic turns of events that happen in life that can turn our life
and routine around in a moment. Accidents, disaster, the death of a
loved one happen unexpectedly, and can profoundly affect our lives.
These are outtakes we would prefer not to happen or even replayed in
life. Some of life’s outtakes have the potential to embarrass,
humiliate, hurt, or disappoint us and also can stop our hopes and dreams
Times of crisis
and tragedy can not be prevented, but how you handle these outtakes will
affect the rest of your life.
There is always a choice in any crisis. We can
choose to grieve, but cling on to hope and move forward, or choose to
cling onto the past and become stuck there. We cannot choose our
circumstances, but we do have a choice how we respond to them. We can
succumb or overcome, and our choice will determine our future. When we
drive a car our focus is the road ahead; if we spend all our time
looking in the rear-view mirror failure is more or less inevitable! The
same is true in life, we will fail, or at best remain at a standstill if
we keep looking back and focusing on the events behind us, reliving the
A young African-American girl was born to unwed
impoverished teenagers, in the racially charged backwoods of Mississippi
during the middle of the twentieth century. She was abused by male
relatives, and became pregnant at age fourteen. This girl did not seem
to have many choices about her future and its potential to turn around
towards success. However, she determined that these devastating outtakes
of her life would not predetermine her future. Despite her circumstances
this girl learned how to succeed by working hard, being true to herself
and communicating with compassion and honesty.
This woman’s success story may seem like a fairy
tale, for Oprah Winfrey is now one of the most well known and
influential women in the world. However Oprah would acknowledge that her
tragic childhood experiences have helped her remain true to her
commitment to persevere and aim for excellence.
Winfrey is well known for her TV show, O magazine and book club, but
also for the way she had explicitly described her own battles with
weight loss, depression,
and relationships. She has made many
connections between her past struggles and poor choices to the ‘aha’
moments that motivated her to take those experiences and learn from
them, ultimately bringing her to a place more success and respect. Oprah
chose to overcome, not to succumb.
Oprah is one of numerous
examples of people who overcame the outtakes of their life and did not
allow the odds to intimidate them. Just as actors learn from their
mistakes and use them to improve their performance, so can we use our
outtakes to improve our lives.
Don’t let your
outtakes ‘take you out’; use them to take you forward