Yesterday, I almost put myself into a near-death situation.
I tried taking a shortcut home by following a stream down a deep ravine rather than a safer but longer windy paved path.
My optimism and confidence that the stream would eventually intersect the path meant that I didn’t turn back when I slipped and got an entire shoe drenched. Or when I got trapped in bushes filled with thorns and had to double back around. Or when my phone dropped below 50% battery.
Accepting the sunk cost of doubling back kept getting harder. Climbing half a mile, 3/4 of a mile, and finally, a mile back uphill felt less and less compelling until I eventually realized that every step downhill was making things worse: I was a city kid, traveling alone, had no idea where the path was relative to me, and was one twisted ankle from being completely and utterly stranded somewhere without cell service.
Ultimately, I turned back, accepted the lost, shared location & progress updates, and carefully headed back up.
Just because you’re in a bad situation doesn’t mean you can’t make it worse. The next best thing to not making a mistake is not continuing to make the same #mistake over and over again.