One of my earlier mentors once told me this: The biggest mistake a person can make, is not the mistake. The biggest mistake is not learning from it.
That message came at probably one of my lowest points in life. But it has since played a huge part in my revitalisation. In fact, it now part of a cornerstone of values that guide me in life.
Learning from experience is a key factor in growth and progressing in life. It is also one of the elements which I aim to incorporate in my training. Lecturers can talk, mentors can advise, books can inform – but in order for one to truly understand the meaning of the messages and gist of lessons, one really has to experience.
The only way to experience then, is to take action.
I know taking action can sometimes invoke lots of fear. Indeed, personally, I feel it’s the number 1 obstacle in our growth. Yet, having said that, I also believe that fear is not an enemy. It’s merely the body’s tool to protect us from harm. It’s also really another tool to help us understand ourselvels. The problem begins, however, when we allow it to paralyse us.
Besides the earlier posts that I’ve made on Overcoming Fear (read all three to get the most out of it), I’ve noticed that it helps to have a greater sense of desire than a sense of fear.
Having a greater desire to succeed than the fear of failure is a fundamental driver which moves us forward in our quest for growth and personal improvement. That principle alone is arguably my biggest proponent and reason for my transformation from a highly introverted and quiet individual into a public speaker. Most importantly however, I’m enjoying doing the things which I never thought I’d be able to do! Ie: Speaking in front of a crowd and adding value to people’s lives!
Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you see it), the journey in life isn’t always smooth sailing. And the road ahead can be tough and challenging That’s when experience comes into play! As we move forward, we look back on the skills and strategies that we’ve picked up along the way, improvise it and voila! Problem solved!
As the saying goes: Success comes from Good Judgement. Good Judgement comes from Experience. Experience comes from Bad Judgement.
Good or bad, every experience is another learning opportunity. Research has shown that only 2% of what was taught to us is retained in our memory. But up to 95% is retained when we teach it or use our knowledge. Think about it, did you learn everything you’re doing at work in school? Or did you learn it on the job?
Remember: Experience is the best teacher, for it gives out the tests first, then the lessons.
Ignore it not.