Learning is a life-transforming experience. And more people would engage in it with enthusiasm if learning were fun and interesting.
It’s important to learn and learn well because it accomplishes several things:
- You boost your confidence
- Develop skills that can enhance or change your career
- Learning boosts your brain and keeps you from aging sooner
When you learn to learn effectively, you also improve the quality of your understanding of a subject. You develop knowledge that expands your mind and helps you appreciate life better and find solutions to unexpected problems.
You even have the ability to be more creative because learning gives you more disparate ‘dots’ that you can connect to create something new.
In spite of these benefits, many people dislike learning something new even if it can increase their standard of living. Let’s look at some powerful insights that will improve how you learn and give you the mindset you need to love the process of learning.
Make peace with discomfort
Learning something new or challenging is an uncomfortable process. This is because you have to create new neural pathways in your brain or change existing pathways.
There’s a physical outcome from learning and when we resist this discomfort and see that it takes time to learn something, it’s easy to get frustrated.
So, when you layer on frustration, anger, or other negative emotions over your discomfort, you have a vortex of negative feelings.
It helps to realize that discomfort is normal. When you’re consuming new information, you’re making changes in the brain. Keep this in mind and accept it, so that the next time you’re learning a new dance, a language, or some kind of technical skills, you float with the feelings.
Trust your brain
One of the reasons people stop learning after college or school is because the may have struggled to understand concepts in school. They find that they don’t remember things well or are unable to process a difficult subject. Many people also crammed knowledge into their heads as a way to answer exams. With such experiences in the past, many people hesitate to embark on new learning experiences.
But it’s important to be aware that your brain is more than capable of storing and processing knowledge than you realize.
If you’re willing to see for yourself, here’s a simple challenge. Starting today, spend the whole week or the next three weeks learning a new language that is completely out of your sphere of knowledge. This could be Gujrati, Latin, or Vietnamese.
You’ll struggle to remember words and letters, but continue work at it for a few weeks. Now, take a long break and go back to the language. You’ll be surprised at how much you remember and how much easier it is to pick up more information.
This is spaced repetition in action but without being deliberate. In the final point, we’ll consider how breaks will help you boost your learning.
This seems counterintuitive but giving your mind a break from learning plays a powerful role in actually enhancing how well you learn. Once you’ve put in the effort and worked at memorizing or understanding the subject, your brain will take some time to process this information.
Forcing yourself to regurgitate information or learn more won’t help.
The best thing youc an do is to take a complete break. If you’re in school or college, you’ll need to plan ahead of time to take these breaks.
But if you’re learning as an addition to your normal work, then go ahead and stop learning for a week or two. You can even take a break for months and come back better than before.
This applies to learning Yoga, coding, a new language, and virtually anything else. Spaced repetition in learning is a way to make short term information into long-term memory. By learning over time, you make your brain recall knowledge more easily and store it in a way that makes it easy to access.
There you have it. I’ve laid out some powerful insights that many people are not aware of. These insights can transform your learning not only to make you more knowledgeable but also to make you enjoy the learning process.
Knowing what your mind is capable of and experiencing it expand is a rewarding feeling. Along with these suggestions, make sure that you leverage the right tools. Use online classes, books, and even social media to learn something new.
By combining these tools with the suggestions made here, you’ll grow yourself in a very short time.