Prior experience can hold few real clues to the present.
Please discuss. How does this play out in life?
I’ll start us out. Many of us believe we can learn from past history, particularly our own. We make comparisons, draw parallels, and look to past results and strategies to predict outcomes and find solutions. This can work well, provided the similarities we identify are true and actually exist.
We all have the tendency, once we’ve found a coping mechanism, to want to reuse it. It worked well for us, we’re comfortable with it, and it feels natural for it to be a go-to solution. Issues, however, can arise when we try to make a current situation into something it is not, so that we can employ a known and possibly favored tactic. It’s similar to the analogy of the craftsman with only one tool in his toolbox, a hammer. To him, everything may look like a nail.
Today’s message invites me, when I am ready to employ an existing means of coping, to pause and review whether it is appropriate. What is it that makes my current situation feel just like one from the past? is it an accurate perception or merely an easy or habitual one? When I handle each scenario based on its actual aspects, I will ensure I’m dealing with it most effectively.
How about you? What are some of your go-to coping mechanisms?