Experimentation has given us a huge amount of luxuries, tools, technologies, and social structures that we all enjoy today.
In fact, depending on how you look at it, you could even say that culture itself is the result of experimentation in some sense. Specifically, many different potential values, traditions, outlooks, and institutions have been “tested” throughout history, but the ones which have lasted the longest are those which have proven the most robust.
But whether you are a scientist looking for deuterium products for bioanalysis, or whether you are an average Joe or Jane trying to improve some dimension of your personal or professional life, experimentation – if done thoughtfully and consistently – can yield all kinds of more immediate benefits.
Here are a few benefits of consistent and thoughtful experimentation.
- You can learn a lot of things directly, instead of endlessly theorising about them
In many different areas of life, it’s extremely easy to get caught up in endlessly theorising about things, and in trying to understand and work things out in the abstract.
Ultimately, though, we don’t live “in the abstract,” and many of the most potent insights can only be obtained by discovering things directly, through trial and error in the real world.
An ethos of reasonable experimentation, whether in terms of your small business venture, or in terms of your fitness routine, can yield all sorts of insights that you may never have stumbled across if you had spent too long “at the drawing board.”
- You can “fail” in a controlled way, and learn your lessons accordingly
Failure always plays some part in life, whether we want it to or not. The simple fact is that not everything works out as planned, and it’s necessary to take lessons from each setback we encounter so that we can be more successful going forward.
Failure never feels good – but if you are constantly experimenting on things intentionally, then you create an environment for yourself where you can “fail” in a controlled and limited way, and can learn the right lessons accordingly, with potentially significantly fewer negative consequences.
If you’re running a business, for example, then trying out a few carefully budgeted ad campaigns in order to see which one proves the most effective can provide very useful insights indeed, without the “failed” campaigns representing a massive blow to your career.
- You can often come to a lot of realisations and insights that you could never have seen coming
As already mentioned in this article, it’s often impossible to come to certain insights by reflection and endless thought, alone.
Experimentation, therefore, allows you to discover things first hand, in the most direct and useful way.
This is particularly important when it comes to innovation in a professional context. There are all sorts of things – an unlimited amount, in fact – that might potentially inspire your customer base to fall in love with your service or product. But the odds of you stumbling upon the right formula at the planning stage are very small.
Experimentation allows you to rapidly accumulate insights that you would never have seen coming otherwise, and to then compile those insights, refine them, and use them to improve your offering.