Keanu Reeves Rarely Gives Life Advice — But When He Does It’s Beautiful

4 min read

Education & Career Trends: November 24, 2022

Curated by the Knowledge Team of  ICS Career GPS

When the fear of failure is reframed as an opportunity to learn and grow, there can be no mistakes, there can only be lessons learned. (Image Credit: Shutterstock)

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Keanu Reeves is one that lives in a paradox. For his professional life is one of fame and fortune, glitz and glamour. Yet his personal life honours the stillness and solitude, self-reflection and silence. How he’s managed to hold both is mind-boggling. And it is perhaps why more people are intrigued and curious about him.

This puts him in a position where he knows both worlds intimately. And it is why he can say things like:

  • “I dream of a life where I can walk down the street and hear people talk about morality, sustainability, and philosophy instead of the Kardashians”
  • “Your value doesn’t decrease on someone else’s inability to see your worth”
  • “I don’t want to be part of a world where being kind is a weakness”

So, without any further ado, here is Keanu Reeves’ valuable life advice.

But be warned: It might not be what you’re expecting.

“Try to be wrong every once in a while, it will do your ego good”


He then went on to add:

“The best way to change is to make mistakes. You can learn from your mistakes and then keep moving on”

His advice is unconventional, especially given his stature, but that is what makes Keanu, Keanu. Other people in his position might offer more generic advice like “follow your heart”, “anything’s possible if you put your heart into it”, and “never give up.”

Being the ever-self-reflective type that he is, he offers a different kind of opportunity, one that encourages failure because it helps us to learn. One that encourages making mistakes because it helps us grow. And one that enables us to mess up every once in a while because it helps us practice humility and compassion.

The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.

Alan Watts

What can be a successful recipe for personal growth?

When the fear of failure is reframed as an opportunity to learn and grow, there can be no mistakes, there can only be lessons learned. Then suddenly, fear disappears and in its place lies an excited anticipation, a curious heart, and a willingness to try new things.

And all three of these qualities create a recipe for a wonderful life.

They also relinquish the ego of its need to be right all the damn time.

So, try and be wrong sometimes:


Because it is healthy. Not just for keeping the ego in check but for the development of the brain.

Neuroplasticity shows us that the brain is ‘spongy’, after all.

And that means that it’s a living organism that can either grow and evolve or shrink and diminish.

Certain activities help its development while other things hinder it. Learning is one of those things that help it. Stagnancy, complacency, and/or a lack of challenge are some of those that don’t.

This goes for the brain as it does for every muscle in the body, tree in the forest, and fish in the sea. For when a tree’s survival is at stake, it bursts into action to produce more flowers and fruits than ever before.

We are no different.

“Every struggle in your life shaped you into the person you are today. Be thankful for the hard times, they can only make you stronger”

Keanu Reeves

This relates to both hard skills — the kind of stuff we need for work — and soft skills — learning to speak our truth, setting healthy boundaries, developing the capacity to listen to our intuition, etc…

Learning invites us to dive into the great unknown, be open to not knowing, and perhaps even make a few mistakes along the way as we stumble toward truth.

Have you checked out yesterday’s blog yet?

The Gift of Resilience

(Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the article mentioned above are those of the author(s). They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of ICS Career GPS or its staff.)

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