The Stupid Things In Life (and business)

The Stupid Things In Life (and business)

Wouldn’t it be great to reach a point in life when you just instantly become flawless? No more mistakes, no more fumbles, no more unintelligent words spewing from your mouth. An angel would stand before you and knight you with a sword and say, “You’ve made it—you’ve done all the stupid things you’ll ever do and from now on, you will walk in a faultless manner and your sentences will be coated with white gold. Balls won’t drop—they’ll float on clouds of ease."

This month at the Miss USA pageant in Las Vegas, Nevada, Miss Utah, Marissa Powell said a few stupid things. After being asked a question about gender equality in the work place, she completely tanks and later admitted to having a brain freeze due to being over-giddy (here's the write up and video). In her excitement, she takes on the “deer gaze” and ships out her words on national television that seemed to be random puzzle pieces from 10 different puzzles. The world was puzzled and so was the host. She didn’t get there by saying stupid things at the Miss Utah pageant. She didn’t randomly get picked to be on that stage. She earned it through a series of successes and flawless walks, words, and politically correct gestures. The wins led her to a world stage—and she tanked.

The stupid things in life don’t go away. They can be greatly diminished and cut down, but if you’re living and breathing, you’re bound to have many more embarrassing experiences and stupid actions (especially if you’re trying to change the world). Here’s the good news: the recovery counts.

Marissa Powell appeared on Good Morning America and explained her blunder. She didn't ignore the mishap, but confronted it head on with a recovery. She also answered the same question, and this time she made sure it was flawless.

You are bound to say something dumb, and it might be soon. Diminish the stupid things as much as possible, and when they do happen, plan your recovery in a Big Way.

Ways to plan your recovery:

  • Hit the mistake head on, don't hide from it.
  • Be willing to laugh about yourself. If you can disarm your audience by laughing at yourself, a lot of people will respect and empathize with you as you move to recover.
  • Try again. You messed up? Apologize and try again. (repeat as necessary)
  • Humility first. Egos aside. Believe it or not, this will make you more human and approachable. People want to see other people recover. They cheer for you when you can be relatable and human. They bash and make fun of celebrities. Be human.