Clay has a beguiling magic; it is easy to underestimate how intricate a craft and art pottery is. For all that clay can move to your lightest touch, it takes time and experience to gain mastery over many of the skills involved.
Clay can seem eager to please; however, it does take practice to understand clay and glazes. We need to shape ourselves and our methods to it, just as we want the clay to shape itself as we desire.
It should not be surprising that practice is one of the foundations to building pottery skills. Actual physical practice builds kinetic memories in our muscles.
Getting comfortable and finding your own personal best methods require that you put in a lot of time doing those actions. For example, using a paddle and anvil can at first seem very awkward. After completing the building of a few largish pots, you will have developed a method and rhythm. The same is true of pouring glazes and stacking kilns.
Experience can be boiled down to practice which is then objectively evaluated. Did you accomplish what you wanted to? What did you do well? What can you improve?
Experience expands your understanding of clay and the ceramic process. Through experience your hands begin to "see" and your muscles learn the subtle dance that pushes the clay just right.
It is also only through experience that you can learn the subtleties of decorating, glazing, and firing. You do not truly know a glaze until you have fired using it several times. By the same token, each kiln has its own peculiarities which you will only come to know as you fire it over and over again.
Experience puts thought and observation to work for you as you practice your craft.
Push the limits while you practice your art and craft; it's one of the best ways to push your skills to the next level. Sometimes your efforts may not work out but through evaluating the results you increase your understanding and skills. You may be able to refine your process to sidestep the problem, or you may come up with an entirely new approach to reach your goal.
Experiment with techniques and materials that are new to you. One of the saddest things I've seen is a potter who learned a particular glaze at college, and thirty years later still glazes nearly all his pots with it.
Don't expect everything you try to work out. Instead, take on the role of explorer or ceramic adventurer. The journey itself can be your goal.