The Importance of Metacognition

Our life is full of ill-formed problems. These are problems that have no easy answer. These are problems that require judgement and the ability to discern between right and wrong, good and evil. Unlike so much of what is taught in school, education for life is really about education for judgement; the ability to discern.

Most important problems in life are ill-formed: where to work, what to work on, where to go to school, who to marry, how to become united, how to raise children and the list goes on. There’s no recipe, no 21 steps to success with these kinds of problems, though there are many listacles willing to suggest otherwise. What it means to be an adult, a man or a woman, is to understand how to figure out what to do, when you have no idea what to do.

The good news is that this is the whole purpose of life anyway: the happiness and joy that comes of growth, and the growth that comes of learning. It’s not about getting everything right, right away. It’s about struggling with the messy problems of life, and learning how to choose and act and grow because of it. We become more capable as we try to do the best we can and keep stumbling forward.

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