To learn, is to be alive.
To learn, is to be alive. To learn something new every day, is to keep living. I believe that whenever you watch back and think about yesterday, if you can say that you did something you hadn’t done before, then yesterday was a great day indeed!
It could have been something incredibly small and unnoticeable to something big and meaningful, but what’s important is not the scale of it, but that it exists in the first place. Better to do something small, than nothing at all. We live in a time where internet is so full of knowledge it be a shame not to take advantage of it.
Learn a new skill
By far the most powerful and most helpful way to improve yourself is to learn a whole new skill. That can be something as simple as learning to peel an apple with a knife rather than with a peeler. Or it can be something as complex as learning to use 3D modelling software like Blender, as I’ve been doing for the past few weeks.
But whatever the skill, whatever the knowledge, the important thing is to keep at it. If you just try it, get frustrated that it didn’t work and give up, you’ll never learn anything. To learn, is to accept that it comes only after multiple tries. Repetition is the key to learning. The more you do something, the better you’ll be at it.
The real reward comes later. After hours, days or even weeks of practising it will come a point, when you suddenly realize that you can do it without thinking, or you can create a 3D model without following a tutorial. Then you really feel that all that frustration and repetitive learning has paid off!
Learn something from Wikipedia
But for sure not all of us have the time or possibilities to keep learning whole new areas of skills. But there are smaller ways of learning. And they might be even more interesting ones! One example could be Wikipedia.
Set up a routine for yourself. For example, every morning when you’re sitting by the table and having a morning coffee, or every day when you’re sitting in public transport on your way to work, open Wikipedia and hit ‘Random Article’. And read it.
You won’t get something interesting every time. But don’t falter. Keep at it. It’ll pay off in a ways you won’t expect.
Learn a new word
Another example if reading Wikipedia does not feel compelling: use a random word. Learning a new word might sound simple or even useless, but like with every other exercise, the price comes from volume. Doing it once might not benefit anything, but doing it a few months will have an effect.
So again, set up a routine. For instance, every morning, pick up a dictionary and choose a random word. For better gain you might want to use a special kind of dictionary like dictionary of foreign words or scientific dictionary. But whatever the random word would be, keep it. And use it today.
The goal (or challenge) of this exercise is to use that one word in a normal sentence during that day. For sure you could cheat by saying “Hey guess what, my random word of the day is ‘tabi’!”. But the real challenge is to figure out how to use that random word in such a way, that it doesn’t strike as odd for everyone listening.
Who knows, it might even be fun!
Learning is living
For me, staying still is the worst. Movement is living. Sometimes the movement might not be in the right direction, but still there are things to learn. Learning does not need to be an exercise nor a routine. Just living and doing will be a journey of endless learning.
Only when you stop, learning stops. And then what’s the point of being alive any more?