The freedom to make mistakes

When I heard a speech by Alan Watts before work the other day, one sentence in particular stayed in my head for the rest of the day. Watts said that Freedom in essence means being free to make mistakes and I find this an incredibly motivating statement. In this little article, we will take a closer look at the content of this sentence.

Freedom basically means being free to make mistakes

Alan Watts

When I think about the word freedom in everyday life, a version of freedom that most people imagine often comes to mind. You can sleep as long as you want, you can travel wherever you want, you don't have to answer to anyone about where you go and where you come from. So you are free to do as you please. However, Alan Watts makes the statement in this speech that if you are truly free, you have the freedom to make mistakes. This may seem a bit banal at first glance, but in my opinion it is incredibly motivating.

What Alan Watts is trying to tell us here is that we should not be afraid of any task, big or small. Out of fear of not getting the task done, we can easily become rigid and put the task off. Or, after completing a task, we may be so dissatisfied with the result that we do not move on to the next action. But, whether we are afraid of it or have regrets afterwards, it doesn't matter whether we make mistakes or not. After all, it is impossible to learn something if mistakes never happen to us.

It is our right to make mistakes. Because if we want to be perfect all the time and do not admit our mistakes, we deny a large part of our personality, because no human being is free of mistakes. So it's up to us to be aware of this freedom. Because it is better to make a few mistakes here and there than to do nothing at all.

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