SENIORS: BENEFITING FROM EXPERIENCEMay 23rd, 2012 | By Dr Jerry D Elrod | Category: Dr Jerry Elrod's Senior Moments Blog
Experience, the Best Teacher
If there is one thing seniors have a heap of, it is experience. By the time we have reached the age that we are drawn to web sites like Senior Citizen Journal, we have accumulated great quantities of experience. We have been through the swamp of learning from a great variety of our undertakings. Some have left indelible impressions. Others, to our peril, have been forgotten. Still others rise up to meet us when we have similar occasions that remind us what we did the last time. Learning from experience is, of course, the desired outcome.
Sometimes, we just don’t get it, however. We stumble, fumble and fall into previous behaviors that bring us to a repetition of the same old mistakes again. Instead of being alert to the train coming right at us, we continue to try to balance ourselves by walking on the track. Jumping off the track, climbing out of the rut and looking back at what was about to happen is a very close call way of getting the message.
Benefiting from experience means that you have acquired knowledge that can be helpful in carrying on with life. Experience teaches us to avoid pitfalls. It enables us to employ wisdom, that sometimes came hard, and to miss the consequences that can be very threatening and troubling. Experience teaches is one of those early lessons that deserves to be with us in everything we undertake. Experience allows us to miss the near accident, the almost could have been, the big surprise, the catastrophic occurrence. Ignoring experience allows us to be vulnerable.
The Value of Experience
Major experiences most always leave us with a memory of them that helps us get through. Among the learnings that come from experience are: do not panic; curb assumptions and presumptions; limit what you worry about; increase and improve your ability to be rational; test your perceptions with others; give yourself time to work through a problem; do not hurry; allow yourself to ”sleep” on the issue with which you are wrestling. Remember, most issues look different and better the next morning.
Benefiting from experience means acknowledging the value of that experience. It means that everyday is a “day in class” in which you are encouraged to continue learning and growing. Nothing is so large and intimidating that your own ability to think it through, draw on your experience and conclude with a workable solution cannot be accomplished.