As you develop skill at using self clearing techniques, you will reach a point where it will be obvious to you whenever you are making a mess out of some drill or process. When these things happen, one takes a break and lets things cool down a bit. Then you look back and figure out what went wrong and fix it, usually by simply doing the drill correctly and finishing it.

A beginner, however, is more prone to making mistakes and may not know enough to figure out what went wrong. This may leave you feeling bothered or disturbed or kind of "charged up".

The most important thing to be aware of is that no matter how badly you messed up, it will cool down and fade out. Even in the most extreme cases, it will all be better within a few days or a week.

When you are working with your own mind, it is you who stir things up, and if you drop it and put your attention on something else, it will go away. It is not the same as the "real" world where somebody else will keep shoving something onto your plate.

So if you do get in trouble, give things a little time to cool down. Look around and notice nice things, think of pleasant times, do something that you enjoy. When you do feel better, go back and reread the chapter, and maybe some earlier chapters as well.

The early chapters concentrate on providing techniques which are useful even if you are having difficulty, and gradually explain the basic skills and procedures which will keep you out of trouble or help you spot what went wrong if you do get into difficulty. If you do find yourself bogged down and at a loss about what to do, go back and work over the first few chapters again.

The most common mistakes are:

1) You didn't understand the process and did something else. The solution is to study it again and do it right.

2) The process was just too difficult and never really started running in the first place. Just notice that that is what happened and drop it until the next time through the book.

3) You already got a good result out of it and then kept grinding along trying to go further. For this you spot when you really felt good doing the process and notice the point where it was completed.

4) A process started running really well but you got distracted or otherwise abandoned it without finishing it. Sometimes this gives you trouble on the next process, so for this you also check back over the previous few processes that you have run and finish any that were left incomplete.

5) You tried to run a process at a time when you were otherwise distracted, tired, hungry, upset, drugged, or incapable of concentrating for whatever reason. Some processes will work under these circumstances, but others will fail. The solution is to rerun the process at a time when you are feeling better. Or use processes which address the situation directly.

In general, you want to be feeling your best when you learn new things and try to make forward progress on these materials. Many of the techniques are also helpful when you are feeling below par, but in that case you should generally stick to things that you have already learned and done well with.

Some things will be easier for you than others and it is the easiest ones that will work best if you are below your normal levels of ability and concentration. So don't discount the things that seem too easy or simple. Those are the ones that might work if you are sick or overwhelmed or halfway unconscious.

If you do get too much stirred up by carelessly skipping around through the book, give things a little time to cool down and then go back and do it right, handling one chapter at a time rather than trying to do everything at once.