Why you can’t buy experience

The photo above is the latest addition to our family. As you can see we both look pretty relaxed.

But it wasn’t always that way. This little girl is our fourth child. My wife and I thought we were done and dusted in that we have three beautiful children, the oldest who has just started high school. This little one is a gift from God, but we’re definitely stopping at four!

When our first child was born, while I knew it was a special time, I also found it especially stressful. When he cried I worried we were doing something wrong. When he had wind I thought we were somehow torturing him. When I thought about sending him to school and all of the costs associated – not to mention pre-school – I would fret. Being a new parent was so far out of my comfort zone.

But by baby number four, we just take it all in our stride. Why? Because we’re experienced. We’ve been there three times before, we know the ins and outs, and so we can 100% be in the moment with this little one, with full confidence that we know what we are doing.

It’s a lot like life, and for me, business. As a younger man, the things that caused me to lose sleep barely concern me now. I remind myself that I’ve been there before, so no matter what the challenge is at hand, I am now highly confident that I’ll get through it with ease. I am experienced and so with this experience comes confidence and competence.

Going through tough times in life can feel like the situation is going to break us. I have personally been through business stresses (such as the GFC) where I really did think I’d break. I didn’t think I had it in me to get through. But I did, and that’s where experience comes into play. The tough times we go through then give us the experience for the challenges we will face down the track.

As you’re getting older you may not have the waistline, the hairline, or the elasticity of skin that you once had, but you have one core thing: experience. You’re wiser, smarter, and you’re also more streetwise. That is, you’ve ‘been around the block’ a few times in life and you have those years under your belt to really make a difference.

Proverbs 16: 31 says: Gray hair is a crown of splendor; it is attained in the way of righteousness.”

I encourage you to keep going, to keep dreaming, and to find another gear with all that experience and wisdom that you have in the second half of your life.

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