young business woman with head in hands in front of computer screen.
Image: © ohishiftl/

How to stop obsessing over your professional mistakes

21 Jun 2019

Do you find yourself unable to stop thinking about the mistakes you’ve made at work? This infographic could help.

Even the most efficient and dutiful of people are bound to make mistakes from time to time. Probably many mistakes, in fact. We are all human and, therefore, fallible. Even AI, often hailed as the ultimate driver of productivity and unfailingly accurate, makes mistakes, hence why there is practically an entire genre of comedy devoted to autocorrect text gaffes.

Any reasonable manager should be able to recognise that mistakes are normal and, so long as they aren’t indicative of gross negligence or malicious intent, can be forgiven. Yet even if you have a reasonable manager who forgives you, you may still struggle to forgive yourself.

Do you constantly beat yourself up over mistakes? Does the prospect of making an error fill you with anxiety, and do thoughts of your past mistakes border on invasive? If so, you may need to check out this infographic brought to you by NetCredit.

For one, try to observe the kinds of statements you’re making about yourself. Although easier said than done, try to avoid being definitive and overly hard on yourself. Recognise that just because you feel like you may be a failure, or something to that effect, doesn’t mean you actually are.

If you find yourself stuck in a negative feedback loop, it may be a good idea to distract yourself. Make a hot drink or perhaps go for a walk. Both will provide a nice, soothing, sensory experience that can pull you away from an unhelpful line of thinking.

Also, you should step back and take a breath. Worry can often cause shallow breathing, which in turn will increase stress. Taking deep breaths, and therefore getting more oxygen to the brain, will inspire a wave of calm.

For more tips on how to stop obsessing over your mistakes, check out the infographic below.

worrying about mistakes infographic

Infographic: NetCredit

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Eva Short
By Eva Short

Eva Short was a journalist at Silicon Republic, specialising in the areas of tech, data privacy, business, cybersecurity, AI, automation and future of work, among others.

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