Taken as raw data, the amount of information we receive every moment through our senses (there are more than five!) has been estimated at roughly 2,000,000 bits every second. I don’t take that number literally, but interpret it as ‘a metric fuck-ton’ Our conscious mind, however, has been estimated to handle 124 bits every second. I don’t take that number literally either, but interpret it as ‘a tiny fraction of a metric fuck-ton’
I do take as fact and gospel that the difference between these two amounts creates ripe conditions for lots and lots of different interpretations and errors) of life, love, and everything in between. In short, human error.
What this means to me on a daily basis is that I filter most of what I hear during a day as an opinion or an expression of personal experience, which is most definitely NOT fact or gospel. Evidence? Sure, but low-value evidence, and hardly reason enough for me to incorporate into my own strategies for interacting with the world.
This means that even though a person has had an experience in a particular situation, I believe I can have a totally different experience. It also means that I believe most of what I say to be an opinion or an expression of personal experience as well, and if you listen close to how I structure my language, you’ll find it peppered with phrases that illustrate this. Not always, but usually.
That’s not to say that I don’t experiment with people’s advice, because I do. I just don’t consider it worthwhile until I have tested it and found is successful on several occasions.