Opinion: A lesson from a cup of coffee

Lyndsey Schley

Lyndsey Schley

Lyndsey Schley is a sophomore news major and columnist for the Daily Kent Stater.

Contact her at [email protected].

We learn from our mistakes, or so we think. If we do the same thing twice, we will get the same results.

Though this is correct if it is applied in the same situations with the same variables, we often forget that life is not a lab, and in real life, “rules” are often not actually rules.

I was reminded of that this past Friday when I decided to try coffee for the first time since middle school. I had not even been able to choke down the sugar-filled, half-milk versions, and since then, I had made up my mind that I was just not a coffee drinker.

However, last Thursday, when I was stocking Starbucks products into the fridge at work, something about them sounded good. So, I tried one the next day.

Boy, have I been missing out. It was delicious, the perfect blend of creaminess and the smell of coffee, not the too-harsh, disappointing taste that has made me so dislike it. Admittedly, I do not think I’ll ever be able to drink it straight black, but now I know there are variations that I like.

This made me wonder what other things I have not tried because I was “once bitten, twice shy”. I do not try to talk to strangers because they often do not want to be bothered. I do not ask people on dates because I have always been rejected. I avoid riding a number of wheeled, human-powered vehicles because I broke my arm on a Razor scooter when I was seven. I am not certain how many other things I have been holding myself back from because of one or two bad experiences, but this is a habit I intend to stop.

Humans are not static. Our experiences are always changing us, warping our opinions and knowledge. Maybe the you from six months ago was incapable of something, but that does not mean the you from today should not give it a shot. The outcome could be different.

Also, the more we fail, the more we will learn. Oftentimes, we can gain a lot if we analyze our past failures. There is a lesson hiding in every experience, if only we try to find it.

This year, I have tried some things that I never thought I would have liked and have greatly enjoyed myself. I could have written these things off and never experienced them. I would advise anyone who feels stuck in a rut to exit his or her comfort zone.

It takes careful thought to figure out what things you should give up on and what things you should attempt, but it is important to allow yourself to revisit your long-held assumptions. You never know what pleasant surprises you will find, even if it just means enjoying a good cup of coffee.