Writers of a certain age (read: old) will from time to time look back at their work from long ago. The experience can feel like recalling the bad choices of youth, such as an ill-considered tattoo or a foolish romance. The early writing seems so overdone, overwrought, overwritten – hallmarks of a writer trying too hard to say “notice me.”
"Now write it again, and appreciate how you write it differently."
I love this assignment. There's a bit of "don't make the mistakes I did" out there. But why? Why is anyone trying to rob people/writers of their own path. You have to write your way in, out, and through over and over to find out your way. Like life. Sure, sometimes there's a boss or teacher with constraints, but finding a way to be yourself within constraints is something only each writer can figure out for themselves.