Don’t be led around by statistics

I’ve mentioned quite a few times on this blog, that I’m a competitive bowler. Bowling has taught me much about life. If you want to understand what I’ve learned about life through the sport, you can read those posts here:

Now, I’ll add another one.

Don’t be led around by statistics.

When I was young and my skill in bowling was rapidly improving, I would lean on statistics to comfort me. If I had two under average games, I would lean on that fact, rather than confidence in myself to say, “I’m due for an above average third game.”

The problem here is that psychologically it would work the opposite way on me too. If I was leading a tournament, I always felt I was holding off a regression to the average.

Today, I don’t think this way. I see each event as the possibility to be an outlier. Something far beyond the normal range. This is what winning a tournament is.

By getting older, if I do revert to thinking purely statistically, I can think in terms of years, not a few games. I could be over average for two years, then have a down year instead. Being too young, thinking on those time scales isn’t even possible.

However, when at all possible, don’t see yourself as a statistic because that is an anchor to average.