Baseball player Earl Wilson, the first black pitcher for the Boston Red Sox, quipped, “Experience enables you to recognize a mistake when you make it again.” Let’s face it: we’re going to make mistakes. Too much happens to us in life for us to be able to understand all of it. Our experience overwhelms our understanding. And no matter how smart we are, our understanding will never catch up with our experience.
So what is a person to do? Make the most of what we can understand. Some people do that in two ways. First, at the end of each day they try to remember to ask themselves, “What did I learn today?” That prompts me to “review the page” of my notebook for the day. The second thing they do is take the last week of every year to spend time reviewing the previous twelve months. They reflect on their experiences—successes and failures, goals accomplished and dreams unmet, the relationships that built and the ones that lost. In this way, you will be able try to help close some of the gap between what is experience and what is understand.
Continue reading “We All Experience More Than We Understand”