For Better Learning, Practice Learning to Learn

This week I moved from a PC world to Apple. I had to learn several new programs and how to ‘talk’ to my new track pad. No more double clicking in the middle of the pad. Now I had to remember to use my left hand on the lower left corner of the thing. What! I have to work 2 handed now? OY.

I’m also rehearsing a new one-woman show and have about 30 pages of script to memorize.

Practice being a life-long learner

The skill of challenging one’s self to learn something new requires practice. More and more I encounter people in the workplace who avoid learning new things. In the last 6 months at various client sites I’ve heard:

  • I don’t want to have to learn that new computer program.
  • I’m too busy to learn about the marketing initiative – it’s just the flavor of the month anyway.
  • Why do they keep changing the web-portal? I can never find anything I want. Frankly, I’ve just stopped using it.

Life long learning is a mindset, and a must in the modern age. Work has become so knowledge-intensive that learning really is the new form of labor.

Learning to Learn

Here are some ways to practice ‘learning to learn’. Look for opportunities to:

  • Learn to be – Really ‘see’ the world around you. What is caught your eye this morning? Ask yourself why. Be aware of your own thoughts. How are you feeling? Can you take a deep breath and calm yourself down?

  • Learn to live together, and with others – Who do you need to resolve a conflict with? Reach out to them today. Travel: discover other people and their cultures.

  • Learn to know – Master learning tools rather than acquisition of structured knowledge. Ask for coaching and feedback from those you trust. Read a book. Watch a documentary. myPractice helps organizations ‘learn to know.’

  • Learn to do – Figuring out my new computer falls into this category. What can you learn to do that you don’t already know? How to use an element of excel that’s always baffled you? How to change the oil in your car? How to overcome a sales objection? Learning to do helps keep the mind sharp and the body engaged. myPractice helps people ‘learn to do’.

Practicing ‘learning to learn’ will pay off in many ways because learning throughout one’s life instills creativity, initiative and responsiveness. The very things our new economy rewards.

Now if I can just figure out how to use iweb, I can publicize my new show!

About the Author:

I started my career as a professional actress and now work with business folks helping them increase their executive presence by learning the skills actors use to have great stage presence. Clients include: Google, Comcast and the Harvard Executive Education program (yes, THAT Harvard. My Mom is too proud.) Typically companies bring me in as a keynote speaker or workshop leader. Let's talk about how I can help you, too.

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