“There is no such thing as a problem without a gift for you in its hands.”–Richard Bach

Wahkin D.

To begin, my advice to anyone who doesn’t think before you act is to think. It will save you a lot of stress and unnecessary drama in the long run. In my recent experiences of not thinking before I did something, I made a couple of big mistakes that I will regret for a long time. One of the first mistakes I made was letting other people influence my decisions. In my past experiences before attending FMA, I’ve let other people “play God” with my life and it’s not a good or healthy thing to let yourself fall for. It only hurts in the long run. Another mistake I made was my attitude toward the school I’m currently attending. If I wasn’t so immature and hadn’t let my bad attitude control my actions, I wouldn’t be in the trouble I’m currently experiencing. I probably would also not be writing on this topic!

Nonetheless, it was a big wake up call for me, and one that I never intend to go through again. One of the most valuable experiences I got out of the ordeal was how not to react to impulses, but rather to think things over first. As Mr. Mike says, “Think of the worst possible outcome, and then ask yourself, ‘Is it worth it?’”

Sean M.

Before, during, and for a few weeks after the second expedition here at FMA, I had developed opinions, which resulted in attitudes that I was right, that I had been unjustly sent to FMA, and that I felt persecuted and dehumanized and, most of all, not free. These attitudes I was carrying with me started to hurt me more and more every day. I lost my simple privileges of being a student at FMA, and I treated the staff with the utmost disrespect. I disobeyed many, if not all of the rules set for students, and I hurt the reputation of this school with actions that occurred during the second expedition. All I can say for myself now about those past opinions, attitudes, and actions is that I was wrong – very, very wrong. It took some pretty massive events and repercussions for me to realize that.

After first believing that I was here as a punishment set forth by my parents, I have come to realize that I am beyond lucky to be here. This place did not need me, but I needed it. Without Freedom Mountain Academy, the staff here, and especially Ms. Margaret, I would be in jail, but because of them I am still here, on my way to a brighter future. I have extreme gratitude for this school.

I would like to repay the school, and my fellow students for the harm I caused through my actions. As I have been instructed, the only way to do this is to move forward, bearing in mind that I now have more riding on my progress than I did when I first started. I am now accountable for myself, something I learned while at FMA. I have to make amends for my own actions, and I will attempt to do that in everything I do here. I am enthusiastic about being here, and I hope to remain. I have progress and amends to make, and I will to do both.

Beau M.

 Through a mistake I made at FMA, I have learned many things. First of all, it pays to be truthful when you are asked a question by someone who is helping you become a better person, especially if you want his/her respect. I also have spent a lot of time working on the weekends to work off my debt to FMA and my parents, instead of being inside doing homework, or just hanging out and playing catch with my friends. I have also learned about how far Ms. Margaret will extend herself to help me, even after I lied to her, because she wants to see me succeed. Mr. Kevin, our history teacher, gave us a quote about friendship. “A friend is someone who helps me build a better, stronger me.” If I think about this before I go hang out with a friend, I will make much more positive choices which will have a good effect on my life. Because of the poor choice I made, I have learned how much the staff at FMA cares about the students, and wants them to succeed. I am grateful for the chance that I have been given to prove that I have learned from my mistake, and that I am willing to change my behavior and become a leader instead of a follower.

Michael P.

The attitude that created this situation was an unwillingness to work with and cooperate with the staff at FMA. I felt as though I had just been dropped off at this school with no idea where I was or why I was here. These attitudes were opinions of mine which I had emotionally strengthened. They had directed me toward what I was asking life to give me, whether I knew I was asking for it or not.

In the situation in which I found myself, I did not take any action to stop what was happening, and when I witnessed a crime, I involved myself in it and didn’t tell the truth about what had happened. I learned from this mistake, and the attitudes I hold now will help direct me toward my desired destination. I think more clearly on the outcomes my actions might have. I used this experience as an opportunity to learn, and not become something I dwell on, so that I can better become master of my own life.

Nathan P.

Recently I got myself into a situation that was created by a very poor attitude. Thinking of my own selfish reasons, I decided to act on them, and didn’t think twice about it. If I could restart the situation, I wouldn’t take the same choices, not because I got in trouble, but because it was the wrong thing to do. My morality was on one side, and instead of staying there, I chose wrong over right and went straight to the other side. Instead of letting leadership roles kick in, I claimed innocence like a gun, with false logic as the bullets, and all that did was blow up in my face.

The attitude that can change this is gratitude. This place is the best place for me, and the instructors are the best influence for me. What this school has to offer me in the long term is mine for the taking, if I choose to take it, and the knowledge I can get is remarkable and useful for the future, and for that I am grateful. The things I learn here will definitely help me avoid future consequences as the result of my negative attitudes.


“Do not look where you fell, but where you slipped.”–Liberian Proverb

One Response to Learning from Mistakes by Wahkin D., Sean M., Beau M., Michael P., and Nathan P.

  1. Ellen Kruse says:

    Wow, really impressed with everyone’s self reflection and honesty. I just stumbled on this page and it is inspiring not only for future students, but to anyone desiring a mindful life. Thank you.

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