TOEFL Essay Topic 108 - Some people believe that the best way of learning about life is by listening to the advice of family and friends. Other people believe that the best way of learning about life is through personal experience. Compare the advantages of these two different ways of learning about life. Which do you think is preferable? Use specific examples to support your preference.
Listening to the advice of other people
Some people believe that the best way of learning about life is by listening to the advice of other people. Other people would say that the best way of learning about life is through personal experience. Of these two alternatives, I believe that listening to the advice of family and friend
is better. The reasons are as follows.
First, our personal experience is very limited,since we do not live more than once. It narrows our way of thinking. For example,we have to choose only from one to several jobs in our lives and it is impossible to try all the existing works. On the other hand, we can listen to the advices of office workers, doctors, lawyers, or professors. We can learn as much as we want from these people in various occupations and it will provide us with more perspectives than what we can obtain in our own lives.
Second, we can be more objective when we are judging the experience of other people. On the other hand, when we think of our own experiences, we cannot be. That is, we sometimes refuse to be remided of something shameful, sad, or embarrassing, because it is too painful for us to think about it. It will prevent us from learn from ourselves. In listening to others stories, however, we do not have to be reluctant to be reminded of it. We can analyze the situation without being emotionally, which makes it easier for us to learn something from it.
Third, we can choose only the advice that we feel is valuable for us. Therefore, although some people might think that the experiences of the others are not always useful for our lives, it is not so much a problem. If we think that the advice is not applicable to our current situations, we can easily ignore it and apply the other ones. In contrast, when we refer to our own experiences, we tend to stick to it and cannot be as flexible as the case where we refer to the ones of somebody else. In other words, we can be more effective when we rely on the other people.
For these reasons above, I think that listening to the advice of the other is the best way to learn about how to live our lives.