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“Don’t rush me. I’m making mistakes as fast as I can.”

At work a few weeks ago, I passed by a coworker’s office and laughed at the sign she had posted on her door. Too true. I make mistakes. And the faster I try to get things done (or the more tasks I’m juggling at the same time), the more likely I am to mess up or drop something.

Take for instance, formatting my latest book.

I wanted to get last year’s blog series into publication in a timely fashion. Not to mention I had several other writing tasks clammoring for attention just as soon as Be Like a Tree: The Keys to a Fruitful Life was done. I copied, pasted, sorted, revised, and proofed the content. I searched the Internet for the perfect cover image. Then it was time to transfer everything into the precisely-formatted template. I spent hours getting everything just right and previewing the pages … only to order a proof copy and discover an annoying light gray box behind the words on every page.

I have no idea where it came from or where it was lurking in my file or even why it didn’t show up in any of the zoomed-in print previews online. But, I certainly couldn’t publish a book with a distracting gray box! So, I copied the content over to Notepad, closed Word, reopened Word, and copied the format-free content back into a new document. Then started over with all the formatting … and previews … and ordering of a proof copy … and approving the book again.

And that doesn’t even begin to touch on the problems that cropped up when I tried to save time and let the company automatically convert the book file into the Kindle version. Blank pages and mystery page numbers cropped up everywhere, so I slowed down and did the e-book fomatting process on my own.

I’m a flawed human who makes mistakes, especially when under stress. Please extend me grace … and I promise to do the same.

What about you? How often do you make mistakes? What contributes to their frequency? Do you find it easy to extend grace?

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