There is something to learn from everybody

productivity Aug 16, 2023
There is something to learn from everybody

Did you know that just about anybody can be a role model for you? A role model for what to do or not to do. Many people have this idea that you should only learn from those who you can look up to, and there is definitely wisdom in this. However, you can learn just as much from those you'd rather not admire. In this way, there is something to learn from everybody.

It is equally important to know what to do as it is to know what not to do. There are plenty of times when knowing what not to do is even better.

When we have this kind of variety of people in our lives, we are able to draw our wisdom from multiple sources. What that wisdom is will be up to your judgment.

For this reason, there is something valuable for you to learn from everybody. Here are two mindset shifts to help you with this.

1. Everybody experiences reality differently

We all live in the same world, with the same languages and the same continents. We have the same sky over our heads and the same ground under our feet. And yet, with so many things similar, we still live such different lives. 

Our experience with reality will always be unique compared to others. The struggles you go through will never be the same as a similar struggle someone else is going through.

And it is because of this that we can learn so much from others.

One scenario that two people share together can give different lasting effects. One person may take a negative experience and turn it into a positive, while another may turn it negative.

The problem many people face when listening to others talk about their experiences is that we automatically assume our experience of reality is what everybody experiences.

We assume that because we have experienced something a certain way, everybody else must have a similar viewpoint to ours. This is not the case the majority of the time.

Understand that everybody's experience is unique to them, even if they experienced the same moments as you. Two people looking at the same train will never see it from the exact same perspective.

When talking to others, pay attention to the perspective they take in their stories and daily lives. 

2. When the heat is on

It's no secret that many people crumble under pressure. The pressure to perform for many people is just too much. This, however, can be used to your advantage. Unless the person in question does well under pressure, you can learn more from others by turning up the heat.

We all feel pressure from time to time and even perform despite that same pressure. It makes us feel uncomfortable until we take that plunge.

What if I told you there is an amazing utility to pressure? 

Just like with a furnace, turning up the heat melts away the outer layers. By putting pressure on others, you can learn more about them.

When life is comfortable, there's no reason to perform. Performing takes energy, and we want to conserve our energy.

However, in this state, we are not our 100% true selves. Who we really are is who we are when the pressure is on and the heat is sweltering.

Our most honest selves are often made up of traits we'd rather hide. There tend to be a lot of dark traits incorporated into our true selves.

For this reason, we hide it away, only letting it really show when the outer layer is melted away. 

To really see somebody's true self, you must see them in both states: When they have their outer layer and when they don't.

The reason for this is simple: who you are is shaped by the experiences you've been through. If you want to truly learn from somebody, you need to see who they are without the outer layer.

Derive wisdom from multiple sources

The best wisdom is the one that is composed of multiple sources. Those sources can all say the same thing, and you'd still get immense value from all of them.

The key takeaway here is that you want your sources to be diversified, but not necessarily your information. Take as many sources as you can without making the information muddy to get the best results.

- Karl