Confessions of an Outlaw: Valuable Mistakes

As a high-wire artist, Philippe Petit doesn't have much room for mistakes. Still, he finds that mistakes are our best teachers and advises friends and students to treat them as such.

Philippe Petit: If I had a university to direct and in some ways I hope that one day to have my own foundation where I will teach people things there will be a course in mistakes in the sense that I think we discard mistakes, we brush them aside, we in a non creative way mistakes are our best teachers.

When I make a mistake there is two things parallel happening in my head, in my heart and consciously I try to find the why of the situation and very consciously I observe what happened or, you know, recall what happens and find sometime the myriads of details that I didn’t pay attention to.  Or sometime it’s as simple as I was not focusing enough, you know.  If I cut a piece of wood with a saw and not really focused and the blade of the saw jumps and, you know, starts scratching my finger. What a great lesson because I maybe didn’t observe how the fibers of the wood where maybe I didn’t sharpen the saw correctly.  Maybe I was saying hello to a friend passing by instead of concentrating on the curve, you know, the width of the blade. It’s very easy to observe a mistake and then to backtrack and to find out where the causes of that.  So I am always very interested.  It’s like solving a problem, you know.  It’s interesting for me to investigate what went wrong.

This is the ninth video in a nine-part series with Philippe Petit available in playlist form <a href="http://bigthink.com/playlists/confessions-of-an-outlaw-a-creativity-workshop-with-philippe-petit-2">here</a>. 

 

As a high-wire artist, Philippe Petit doesn't have much room for mistakes. Still, he finds that mistakes are our best teachers and advises friends and students to treat them as such.


This is the ninth video in a nine-part series with Philippe Petit available in playlist form here.

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Sponsored
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

Are cats jerks, or is it YOU who is the jerk?

A new study from Oregon State University makes it clear: it's you.

Photo: Wikipedia Commons
Surprising Science
  • Researchers discovered that the more attention you give a cat, the more likely they are to return it.
  • Cats are territorial; being in their home environment greatly affects their attitude.
  • The common wisdom that cats are aloof is provably false.
Keep reading Show less

Why avoiding logical fallacies is an everyday superpower

10 of the most sandbagging, red-herring, and effective logical fallacies.

Photo credit: Miguel Henriques on Unsplash
Personal Growth
  • Many an otherwise-worthwhile argument has been derailed by logical fallacies.
  • Sometimes these fallacies are deliberate tricks, and sometimes just bad reasoning.
  • Avoiding these traps makes disgreeing so much better.
Keep reading Show less
Videos
  • Facebook and Google began as companies with supposedly noble purposes.
  • Creating a more connected world and indexing the world's information: what could be better than that?
  • But pressure to return value to shareholders came at the expense of their own users.
Keep reading Show less