Learning from experiences is one of the ways in which we decide to cultivate more of what we like about ourselves as opposed to just randomly accepting every way in which we react.
Your habits, priorities, ways in which you interact with people and work that you love, even how your perception is being shaped… All of this partially came from learning from your experiences. We are sum of our experiences, hence they are priceless. What you and I are today is due to what we have experienced and how we decided to label that.
If nurtured, this process of learning from your experience can either promulgate progress by repeating what you liked in the past, or simply never bring the good stuff back again.
Always dedicate some time just for thinking
If you ask Robin Sharma, one of the best motivational speakers and book authors in the world, about what he thinks constitutes the secrets of success, he will mention, among other things, dedicating some time for yourself where you can just escape the clutter, sit down and think.
What this does he says, and I cannot agree more, is being able to prioritize about your goals, realize your potential, evaluate your experiences. And there it is- evaluating your experiences.
That’s how we learn about what we want from life; about what it is that makes us enjoy it even more; what pushes us more and more towards success and improvement. And learning from your experiences means taking all of that and bringing it back into your life.
Bring back the things that make you improve
You will discover that you will be amazed with the way you handled something the week before. The way in which you communicated with someone; the way you made yourself go and finish the workout; get up early; stick to a rigid diet and work schedule…
You will surprise yourself about how much there is to your potential and greatness just by reminiscing.
And once you find out exactly that, there is no turning back. You will want more of it. We all do.
When I remind myself about how I applied discipline one week before, I cannot but not try the same thing again. Couple of days ago, I worked for probably more than 6 hours straight on building a website for a client. And just thinking about it, I feel the urge to do the same thing again today.
Same goes with my diet, fitness, social life, myriad of things that I enjoy.
I find what it was that made me tick and just hold on that and try to bring it back.
Learn from your experiences but try learning from others as well
Listening to a video of Scott Dinsmore giving a TED talk, I learned a great way in which we can improve our life and what we experience.
It is rather simple really. You just take this concept of learning from your experiences and try to broaden it a little bit.
I extrapolated three ways that can guide you through this process more easily.
- First, you need to find couple of people who you admire for some reason.
- Then you take a notebook and write down what it is that you like about them. Their discipline, their passion, their dedication, how they talk to people, how they dress, their idea about leisure and enjoying spare time… Whatever it is that you like. Not the person as a whole, but specific part of his behavior which you like to mimic.
- And finally, you take the notebook and pick which of those values you will embed in your own life. Which of those experiences you will try to bring to your life too. Prioritize, set, and go.
What you have after a while is a refined picture of how you should act in many situations in life, and this inevitably translates into improvement and ultimately success.
For example, I recently read a tweet from a fellow internet marketer saying that he spent 6 hours working on Photoshop followed by two hours of writing, and had still few more hours to go. I was fascinated, and wrote this down in my notebook.
As time goes by, I will ultimately try and mimic this in a similar amount, and if I find the experience rewarding in the sense of improving my work, my discipline, or letting me tap into my potential I will try and bring that back into my life over and over.
See which standards, values and experiences lead toward improvement and success and try and make them a part of your life. Learn from your experiences. Over and over.