"With the incredible human ability to learn, one can learn virtually anything and certainly one can learn to do more than enough to be fully capable of creating all of what one wants in life. The problem is that we often 'stop short' of learning that which has high payoffs for making life be as we want it to be!" (See Mastery Learning.)
And, the next thing to realize is that we can learn so much better and so much faster if we approach it the right way!
"It is total nonsense to believe that one will live a good or one's best life by 'just learning by living life, as you go'. It is not just that it is nonsense, it is that it damages oneself and damages the lives of others exposed to the belief!"
The classic and huge waste of life is that of the "information gatherer", who reads, goes to lots of seminars, and spends lots of time being exposed to good information but who does nothing with it. It is a double crime, because the time taken to do the "gathering" displaces the time one could spend actually attaining a benefit from something. (See the Know Can Do discussion, below.)
LEARNING, DEFINED IN THIS VITAL WAY
The objective of learning is to have it facilitate one getting desired results in life.
Yes, it is true that some people will "feel good" about just piling up information acquired. That is nice and I'm glad they feel good from it. But make no mistake about it: While it is "ok" in a sense, it may displace the learning of more useful things that would benefit one's life alot more. Be careful, for those who do learning for pleasure, that one is not engaged in just mental masturbation...
[Note that almost all "feel goods" in life come from the belief that one will be better off in surviving in life. Quite a number of people engage in ineffective learning by getting "quick hits" of dopamine because a piece of information gives one "hope" for getting some betterment of life - but if they seldom follow through, they end up pushing out the gains they could otherwise use that time for.
So, be clear, please, that the purpose of learning is ultimately to get better results in one's life. It is about results! It is about creating "effects" in your life and your world. Period!
LEARNING IS NOT ALL "MENTAL"
The above section title sounds as if there is some mysterious, magical process for learning other than the mechanical mental processes. Yes, each cell or organ has a way of assimilating information, but make no mistake it cannot provide you with ways of living a better life.
So I would expand the normal idea of "learning" to include anything that is acquisition of knowledge that is usable to gain a result.
The knowledge can be in your head, but there is a limited amount that will be well retained. So, I must utilize it well with only what is the most vital, but I can choose to also use other ways than physical mental memory to capture relevant knowledge.
Accordingly, I include in "learning" the acquisition of written knowledge/information in a form and place that can be accessed and used to create a beneficial result. As such, this requires true thinking about how to acquire (take notes, copy), file (make something findable and accessible), and find the relevant acquired information when needed.
Based on that "other, outside memory", you can dramatically expand your usable knowledge beyond your brain, though you will have to recall where to go to to find the information or, more accurately, where to go to find the procedure that will guide one to finding the information.
Note that being strategically smart about this, we might choose to limit or eliminate much of the effort involved in installing knowledge into our mental memory by choosing to take what is feasible and install it in "outside memory"! (If it is accessible elsewhere, then why memorize it!!!!)
Also note that proper outside memory can be 100% reliable, whereas one's physical mental memory is subject to fading, loss, and incorrect recall (big time!).
Note that this outside memory will include procedures, written series of steps and/or reminders of what to do (including relevant reference information), outlines, directories (such as, on this site, the "contents, links" pages), etc. These are all "systems" and any system can be documented and perfected to get greater results - and then used more reliably, since it is not based on mental recall.
Of cours, much of the data/knowledge is already accessible and need not be acquired and organized for it is already accessible. We just need to know where it is and how reliabvle it is - and be good at using search engines. (Millenials may ask "why calculate something in my head, if I can just use a calculator to do it?" Kinda true, though there is a tradeoff in some things, like one's brain, being more readily available and used for at least the frequent simple stuff.)
In the future, more and more, learning will shape-shift into less "memorizing" and more into learning how to access what is needed - though we will still have to learn how to find things and how to think. This frees up time, which I would suggest should first be used to increase our ability to think such that we are able to do more things more effectively for much greater benefits in life!!!!!
Learning itself is at the core of all of life, since it is knowledge that is needed to create that which produces results. Without doing it well, we cannot create the results we want that will have us having a good or great life.
THE PRIMARY MISTAKE OF THOSE WHO WISH TO LEARN
Those who wish to learn to manage their lives better will often make the mistake of believing that exposure to information will cause one to learn it. That is totally not true, as there is only a very small impression on the brain of "fly by" learning, where one flies right by, quickly, the knowledge and hope it is useful.
The road is strewn with wannabes who attend seminar after seminar and gather piles of information, piling more and more on the pile, enthusiastic in their belief that "osmosis" will somehow miraculously cause the brain to know what to do - but who still have lives that don't work despite their [ineffective] efforts.
Be sure to read, below, a few sections down, in the Real Learning, Complete Learning section, the Ken Blanchard conclusion about such illusionary, ineffective learning.
The only true indicator of effective learning is in the results one produces in life. A pile of information and the ability to spout off lots of theory is not an indicator of life competence or ability. Information unharvested is useless (= "not used").
People will not lead better lives if there is nothing (new knowledge/wisdom) to intervene to improve those lives. There is no magic that supersedes that reality.
Indeed, in Your Path Is The Only Path Attainable, the point is made, although it explains why the steps one has made in one's past are determined only by forces outside oneself - you have to read it to "get it".
THE LEARNING EFFECTIVENESS QUADRANTS - CRUCIAL!
These are the learning quadrants based on levels of expertise and having a system to learn effectively.
This is how effective learning is in each quadrant, using a "grading" system of A through D.
Quality of information
Systematicness Non-expert Expert
Systematic (a "program") C- A (With a qualified coach: A+)
Random D B-
WHAT TO LEARN
Learn in the order of what has the biggest payoff in terms of desired results AND the ability to get results. Core skills are those that are used the most often and which support learning and effectively executing the other skills. (The 80/20 Rule)
The only purpose of learning
Real learning, complete learning → complete success
The final assessment is only in the real world
Developing talents and genius - the process
Virtually no limits
Best ways to learn
One plus at a time
Examples of paths of learning
"The test for real learning is passed only when you have the ability to get the result - and you've actually applied that ability to get the desired result - and can duplicate that result at will. It is then and only then that you've mastered life and have the ability to make yourself truly happy and fulfilled in life."
THE ONLY PURPOSE OF LEARNING
The only purpose, and the only indicator of effective learning, is to enable one to get the results one truly would want in an informed life.
REAL LEARNING, COMPLETE LEARNING → COMPLETE SUCCESS
Exposure and a good feeling and some learning is not "authentic" learning. Authentic learning is following through on the initial learning to really get it down so it is usable AND to thoroughly install it, and revise it if need be, to get the result that is desired.
Yes, it is failed learning if you don't get the result - so you need to persist in getting feedback and learning more if you have not succeeded yet in getting the desired result.
If we realize that we learn in order to get a result, that means that we have not completed the learning until we are able to get the result.
Read, follow, and integrate into your life The Completion Principle , as one of the key "laws" that have one get what one wants out of life - without that, you won't "win" at the level in life that you could.
Authentic learning = Learn, hone, complete, put into action, get result
- and, if it is appropriate compared to other needs, to truly master certain things "beyond beyond".
All other learning is not-authentic learning, not "real" learning. It is "going through the motions" and occupying time that could be better spent getting a good result. (I'm talking here about learning beyond the basics that our schools are to teach us. Learning the basics is authentic learning as it serves as the enabler to be able to go to the next level.)
As Ken Blanchard puts forth in Know Can Do!: Put Your Know-How Into Action, most people go to a seminar and feel (incorrectly) like they got something. And, then, that's it - everything stops and nothing substantial happens. They don't even review it and add to it and don't take it to the level of usability. They do, however, get a "hit" by doing something (attending a seminar, getting excited - and then fizzling), but they don't get the results that effective people do by using the Completion Principle to work on mastering it until one has attained the results!!!!
THE FINAL ASSESSMENT IS ONLY IN THE REAL WORLD
We stop short. We know some platitudes. We believe strongly in a number of untruths. Yet we pride ourselves at being "good enough" at life - kind of a foggy assessment for most people - as the final assessment is only that which shows up in the real world - the person gets the results he/she wants in life!
I am bemused, and concerned, when people tell me "I already know that", but yet they do not have the desired result. Knowing a part of something or knowing about something is different than really knowing the thing - as true knowing is only in evidence when the desired result is present!!!!!
Although there are many examples, one good example is that many people think they are doing (or know how to do) affirmations the way they should do them. But, here again, their knowledge is only partial if they have not truly attained the desired result: to firmly believe what is true and what is effective. Visit Self-Talk and Changing Beliefs and master those if you are to truly have the ability to have all of what you truly want in life.
What we are talking about here is the "skill" and process of learning, not the courses which we learn through. (Under Self Development we have identified some sites that are good for learning specific subjects and more "concrete" skills; see that section to check into those, either to scan now to familiarize yourself with it or go to it later, as it is listed on your master navigation bar.) Please read right now the introductory page to the www.thelifeuniversity.com . The site also includes many of the methods of learning that are effective and the programs for various ages for learning about life.
LEARNING THE RIGHT WAY
We wish to do the following (and to commit to this process!):
1) Learn life systematically, rather than randomly and inefficiently
Therefore, the learning is approached with a plan, identifying the resources (individuals, organizations, books, workshops, etc.) and the opportunities and then the steps needed. Iit can be a simple listing or it can be a complete plan (see the Life Plan) - or something in between in form. See the plans in The Learning Plans section. See The Power Of Concentrated Focus. Note that one always learns according to The Learning Curve. In complicated areas where there are many cross interactions, such as in personal growth, one will experience at first the frustration with seemingly slow progress for awhile, then suddenly a burst upward on what is called The Progression Curve. Learning and achieving expertise is speeded up and honed better if one spends thinking time where one is developing something for one's own use - and then implementing it. Learning can be semi-passive, but it is highly active when you put things together on your own - then you will develop much more quickly. See "The Process For Developing Skills And Talents."
2) Use expert sources to learn the right stuff at the highest level, rather than learn inefficiently or wrongly.
The screening necessary to identify the experts (and the money to pay them) is well worth the effort because the results explode geometrically above what lesser sources provide. The money we pay them is money well-spent, as it is the quickest, most effective path to the wisdom of life.
3) Working with a partner creates far greater progress than on one's own.
This is a key learning and productivity principle, as we tend not to be able to do it nearly as well on our own as with a (qualified) teacher, consultant, coach, or other guide. While the path is straighter and stronger, the "accountability" factor makes a huge difference in keeping up the pace and staying on the path. The acknowledgement and the "cheerleading" tend to also have a large effect, as we, as humans, do respond to that type of thing, often experiencing much greater motivation. A wise partner helps one see the benefits much more clearly.
DEVELOPING TALENTS AND GENIUS - THE PROCESS
VIRTUALLY NO LIMITS
There are virtually no limits to learning; for instance, one will be inspired by watching the DVD or going to the related website for the Son-Rise Program, where autistic children become bright, alive, sensitive, mature children.
BEST WAYS TO LEARN
Intensives. The best way to learn and modify behaviors and ways of thinking is to do "intensives", such as one to five day workshops. This overcomes the possible lack of discipline as to your doing it yourself and is, ultimately, more time efficient and certainly alot more effective. For any workshop. you should leave in the vicinity of 20% of the time spent in the workshop for the wrap-up "completion" of the materials, plus the time for whatever exercises have been assigned for post-workshop. See the sections under Resources, for some possible workshops.
An intensive can be done one on one also with virtually any professional in any field.
Overview Learning. Reading overviews of a particular area give one perspective and help one to tie together major points and most likely to see areas to explore further. An example is the "outline" (Powerpoint-like) The Underlying Basics Of Life series. In a relatively short period of time, one can learn and also remind oneself of a great number of truths about life - and actually alter one's life just out of "seeing" those pieces.
Partnering and coaching. One can learn as life goes on, by talking about life and getting some input on current situations so you'll make better decisions and learn information and techniques that can be applied, plus it will help harness your energy to better life planning and education. See and read
ONE PLUS AT A TIME
EXAMPLES OF PATHS OF LEARNING
Read What Path Of Learning Might A "Young Person" Take? - A copy of an email sent by a 20 year old after taking a class at the Option Institute, with feedback on what paths might work better in life and what could be learned that would serve her much better in seeking happiness. Good for "old" people, too! An interesting look into the difference in thinking and communication between generations, but the commonality of what we are all seeking and how we go about it.
See also Life Philosophy, The Pathway To Enlightenment, where "Alex" the seeker has a suggested program.
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