Mistakes

7 Mar’15 ~QofDay~ Mistakes OK

When did you last make a mistake and be okay with it?

A few minutes ago.

I make hundreds of mistakes every day.

Try not to make the same ones too often.

One weird thing about embarking on a path of constant self improvement, is that what ends up being good news rarely starts out that way.

One can only improve the model of reality one has, when one acknowledges where it is not working reliably.

Similarly one can only improve the strategies one employs in life when one can admit that the strategies in use are not delivering the outcomes desired with the frequency expected.

It is only when we are able to be truthful with ourselves to the degree that we can see a difference between our expectations and reality that we have an opportunity to create something that works more effectively. So long as we continue to force our perceptions of reality into the expectations of our model, then we are fooling ourselves.

It seems that for someone engaged on the journey of enquiry into what reality and possibility might be; the journey can be infinite, with infinite room for improvement, for distinguishing error, acknowledging it, and taking our next best guess at what the best available model might be. Journey without end – infinities are like that. Not the sort of thing that most traditions teach (some, but not many).

[followed by]

Hi Deb

Yeah – one of tricky things is getting that there are many levels to our expectations. There is a very real sense in which we never actually get to experience reality directly at any level, and at all levels our expectations get to influence the data that makes it through to the next level. So it is not at all a simple process to learn reliable ways of detecting unwanted expectation influence, without too much loss of power in the process.

In most situations, the expectations do in fact line up well with reality and do in fact save us a lot of processing power and allow us to work with relatively complex models. And that only works when everything really is as expected. When real novelty does actually appear, it can take a long time to identify it as such.

And this process can occur at many levels within each of us. Each time we make a new set of distinctions we become particularly prone to it at that new level.

It just seems to be a necessary part of the process in a sense, and it pays to be alert to it, without getting obsessive about it – one of those many, many balance things in life.

About Ted Howard NZ

Seems like I might be a cancer survivor. Thinking about the systemic incentives within the world we find ourselves in, and how we might adjust them to provide an environment that supports everyone (no exceptions) - see www.tedhowardnz.com/money
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