This is a card in Dave's Virtual Box of Cards.

Wisdom

Created: 2022-09-10

My email friend, Salman wrote something in one of his newsletters that I can’t stop thinking about:

Wisdom reminds us that we did it once before, and we can do it again.

https://letter.salman.io/p/knowledge-instructs-wisdom-encourages

I can know that "showing up" works because I’ve read about it. I can even believe it in a superficial way, because, of course, it makes sense. But only through actually doing it for a long period of time do I eventually gain the wisdom of showing up.

It’s only because of that wisdom that I do not keep myself awake to "finish this one last line of code" anymore because I know I’ll be able to figure it out tomorrow.

Trust and belief help guide us to the right choices, but they’re prone to uncertainty and doubt when things go wrong. Wisdom is stronger than that because it’s based on repeated experience.

I think my first taste of wisdom was teaching myself the C programming language from the bright yellow "C For Dummies" book by Dan Gookin. Yeah, you read that right.

C for Dummies book cover from 1994

Before that, I had not really known, as I know now, that I could learn anything I want as long as I just kept at it. School did not teach me that. Kindergarten through high school taught me that you either got it right away or it "just wasn’t for you."

If I could learn C, why couldn’t I also learn databases, painting, mathematics, French, how to play a flute? Of course I could. I done it once. I could do it again.

I think it’s wisdom that helps us worry less about what other people might think as we get older. Because wisdom has taught us that superficial things like fashions and opinions come and go.

We’ve seen it before.