How to Find Wisdom from Other People's Experiences

Darryl Bachmeier
Jun 23, 2019

Learning starts the moment you are born

At first, learning is like a survival instinct. As an infant, our mind is a tabula rasa or blank slate. Eventually, learning finds more things to write on it. And over time, it becomes a culmination of our experiences and knowledge, which gives birth to our behavior, personality, and wisdom.

When we were young, learning is limited to the things that our parents, environment, and culture are imposing on us.

But there’ll come a point where we experience struggles, learning is a natural tendency. It is our means to bail out of our situation.

Painful experiences also propel learning. Like a seed left buried in dark soil, somehow, it forms roots and finds its way up and grows in search of the sun.

Learning is a Lifelong Skill

The pursuit of learning is a skill that we have to master. In this unpredictable world we’re in, we can realize that he who learns more adapts best.

The essential skills of today might become irrelevant tomorrow. Thus, it is important that we continuously learn our way through life.

In knowing things, we soon realize our passion. Our passion is something that we want to focus on with the remaining years of our lives. While the rest of our learnings become our means to survive, our passion fuels our will to move on with life.

Learning itself is a lifelong skill. Your pursuit of learning says a lot about the good stewardship of your life. Learning things develops the person in you which in turn adds value to the environment you are in. As your wisdom grows, the person you become becomes a source of influence. If you can create valuable things, you are not only developing yourself but also others.

Learning Shapes Your Vision

Learning leads to survival, then to passion, and eventually to a vision.

As passion aids our personal growth and our vision becomes our means to give back. Our vision is how we see our future selves in the service of others. The desire to impart things becomes stronger as we mature in life. And that’s where we’ll realize how important learning is. That is, it is essential to gain that satisfaction and fullness in living.

And being open to learning from others broadens our opportunities.

Learning about history is one of the good starting points. Learning about your origins gives you a sense of identity. If you understand how people lived before you, you grow appreciation of your present.

We tend to follow the footsteps of those who were ahead of us. But when we finally discover our passion, there comes a strong force that leads us back to our own life path.

As the Bible puts it, we are called to run our own race. We don’t compete with each other but we all have a prize at the end. We can learn from different sources, including others, but everything else leads us back to our own path.

Our vision shapes our future and those who are with us. It’s an interconnected life, after all.

Learning from Others Lessen the Risk

There is wisdom in “Experience is the best teacher”.

Experiential learning involves a multitude of senses. As information triggers more brain activity, the stronger it clings in our minds.

However, the average human life in years isn’t enough to learn everything through experience. While we don’t know which things may come in handy at some point, learning from others expands our solutions bank.

Learning from others also lessen our risk of experiencing pain, hurt, and struggle that comes with an experience. While wisdom becomes more solid this way, our life cannot afford everything. Learning to choose our battles is another aspect of experiential learning. We always have a choice.

As we build the person we are called to be, we also have to learn to make it purposeful. Learning is our responsibility to ourselves and the people around us. And the more we share, the more we gain as well.

When Does Learning Lead to Wisdom?

Gaining wisdom from the things we learn isn’t an overnight success.

Learning things is different from gaining wisdom. Wisdom is the application of all our experiences, learnings, and knowledge for us to make sound decisions.

Wisdom is all about the quality of our learnings.

At the end of the day, no matter how much learnings we cram into our minds, the only things that will be left that matter are wisdom.

And everyone has some wisdom to share. We lead unique lives no matter how interconnected we are. Somehow, at some point, we arrive at a situation that calls for other’s wisdom.

Children are praised when they learn ahead of their peers. Adults are regarded when they don’t hesitate to learn from people behind them or even younger.

How You Can Also Impart Wisdom?

We arrive at the fullness of life when after we gain things, we also give back.

When we choose to open our lives – bad and good experiences alike, we help people relate to us and gain wisdom. Not all wisdom comes from verbal communication; even as we just go about living our daily lives, people observe us and gain insights from how to live their own.

Everyone has the wisdom to share. And we can learn from others in the same way that they can learn from us.

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