My college English teacher told me women look for patterns and men see a scatter plot. Huge generalization, but I have found it to be mostly true. This summer Clara described the exact same phenomenon. Her new husband will do a teeny thing, and she explodes because it wasn't the teeny thing, it was a million teeny things that all mean X. To him, it was still a teeny thing. I don't think either side is necessarily right.
I see patterns. It's very useful for analyzing film themes. Maybe not as useful for analyzing myself. However, I have found it helpful when analyzing the pickles I get into. If I look at the major difficulties I have had over any one year, it seems like common morals of the story follow me out. Two years ago it was, "Know what you're getting into before you get into it." Every month it felt like I had a problem that could have been avoided if I had been more patient to jump into a situation. It took me numerous experiences, but finally, I think I know. The next year, I think, was "Failure is information." This year, I know what the pattern is but I am putting it into words. I think it might be, "Unapologetically stand up for yourself." And while frustrating to keep getting into the same jams, it's almost as if life gives me the same test until I pass, and I can move ahead. Like a pinball game, the conflict with end only so long as I'm inside the same box. The metal ball always rolls down, ready to be smacked back up.