US San Diego College Mistake Offers Spiritual Business Lesson

Disappointment always leads to drama, and drama always has a spiritual lesson to teach even in the business world.

Consider the big mistake US San Diego College made when they mistakenly told 28,000 students they had been accepted into their college.  OOPS.

Control Z! Control Z! Resend! (I can almost see the secretary trying to undo what had just been done.)

That’s one of the pitfalls of instant communication and instant gratification. Mistakes happen on a HUGE level.

Are we really ready for all that technology has to offer?

Only if we can learn and apply the many many spiritual business lessons.

1. With more choice comes more responsibility
2. Disappointments are largely due to expectations than reality
3. There are no guarantees
4. Forgiveness is the new stress management tool

With more choice comes more responsibility

In order to be ready for technology we have to become more responsible. It is clear to me we aren’t there yet. We have kids “sexting” each other, we have cyber-bullies and teens committing suicide. This is because we have not balanced choice with responsibility. We have to see any new choice (like the speed and convenience the Internet provides) like a teeter totter: With more choice you must apply equal amount of responsibility for all things to balance. Our kids are definitely not mature enough yet to handle all the choices, and I’m not so sure we adults are either.

Disappointments are from expectations not reality

I’ll never forget the time I thought I had a speaking engagement in the bag. An e-mail came to me that said, “Go right ahead and draw up the contract. It was close, but everyone agreed you are the one.” I had a moment of celebration then went to work.

Right before I started to draw up the agreement I got another message that said “resend.” I made a call and this is what I heard: “I’m sorry, I sent the e-mail to the wrong speaker. It was so close and I got confused.”

Here’s what I learned. Nothing really changed, I just had a fantasy about what was going to happen and then when the fantasy didn’t materialize I was upset. It was a good lesson that nothing is for certain.

There are no guarantees

Why can’t we learn this one? We get married and later are disappointed that there’s a divorce. We invest in the stock market and when it crashes we freak out.  We grow up and lose the youthful body and get wrinkles. Why do we forget that there are no guarantees…even if there’s a contract, a hand shake and a promise?  In the end if you can’t change what happened your best choice is to forgive.

Forgiveness is the next stress management tool

You can make yourself miserable, and you can talk about what shouldn’t have been done and you can find out who is wrong, but in the end it only prolongs your agony.  Even a five minute episode of recalling an angry experience suppresses the immune system for as much as six hours.

My guess is because we are moving at the speed of light, we will also have mistakes happening at the speed of light. They aren’t going to be little ones either. We are seeing evidence of that with the Wall Street fiasco. My bet is the best investment right now is in learning self-mastery skills such as communication, self-awareness and most of all forgiveness.


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