Well, if you did not make mistakes, you would not be having any fun, right?
Maybe it is just me, but I began learning my Linux basics with openSUSE. You just do not know how much FUN that was! So, I was used to YaST for my system management instead of Synaptic. With Mint, mintUpdate came to me as a natural extension to how the system was updated. The Level 1-5 structure is extremely helpful in choosing how much one wishes to update based on one's skills with Linux.
You should have an extremely excellent experience with Linux Mint if you would consider using mintUpdate with only Level 1 and 2 packages enabled. Also, do not enable dist-upgrade if you want to maintain the highest possibility of stability. I have noticed that many times when someone does wholesale updates via Synaptic that there is a massive potential for system breakage. As you become more comfortable with Mint, you move up in the package levels.
Oh yeah, welcome to the forum and Linux Mint! Good luck, and have fun!