By Mohan Karulkar:
I have a running app on my phone that’s pretty slick. It uses the accelerometer in your phone to track your strides and calculate distance. The only problem is that not everyone has the same leg length or running style, and so out-of-the-box, the app isn’t very accurate with distances. The first time I counted laps, I realized it was adding 25% extra distance to my runs!
I was bummed at first, and started to question all the progress I thought I’d made in my recent reintroduction to running. But the beauty of the app is that there’s a calibrate feature that lets you manually correct the distance tracked on a run. The app actually learns from your correction and adjusts its calculations for future runs. After fixing a single run, the app is now spot-on for me. I’m beyond impressed.
When we screw up, it’s temping to start questioning things about ourselves. Am I a bad person? Am I hopeless? Am I broken? What we sometimes miss is that we have the ability to calibrate too, and 1000 better than any app does. We have free will, and support systems, and a brain that can out-calculate any computer program out there. Yet we accept failure because we think what’s broken can’t be fixed, or that we’re not capable of anything more.
The thing is, lots of stuff needs calibrating because it gets off-base sometimes — it’s really not such a big deal. Bathroom scales have a little knob. People stuff folded paper under table legs. Recipes are adjusted for altitude. February 29. High mileage oil. Reading glasses. Baby aspirin. Dr. Scholls. Pass the salt …
You get the point.
So it’s time to find your calibrate feature. We all have one — it’s the part of us that accepts our mistakes, learns from them, and gets back up to try again.
You know you’re allowed to do that, right? Try again? It’s a fundamental part of the second-chance experience, and it’s a right we all have as humans. If you needed permission, consider it granted!
POTSC is a safe haven for trying again — a place to calibrate and recalibrate and recalibrate again. So let’s start the conversation: What’s off in your life, and what do you need to calibrate?