We begin our formal education at the age of four or five years old and continue until we finish senior school or college/university. Then, once we achieve our qualifications, we tend to believe that the “learning” part of our life is over and we begin our working life – of course we learn at work but it’s reactive learning that takes place, not proactive learning. Proactive learning is about exploration, development and expanding the breadth and depth of your knowledge.
There is a one particular excuse we hear time and time again: “I don’t have time.” But take a closer look at your time; your commute to work could be 10 or 20 minutes of ‘dead time.’ This time could be used to learn by listening to podcasts or audiobooks, or using apps like Blinkist which provides 10-15 minute book summaries.
Get into the habit of investing in learning and improving yourself during dead time. Here are the top three benefits of continued learning:
Opens up new opportunities
Taking the time to proactively learn will give you a better understanding of the events around you. By progressively deepening your understanding and knowledge of subjects that matter to you, you will be able to see the bigger picture. Those moments of clarity where something finally becomes clear or makes sense will become more frequent.
The more you learn, the more you’ll be able to make connections between pieces of knowledge. Look at each new learning and apply it to your own experiences, you will then begin to see and take advantage of new opportunities that you didn’t see before.
Fast track to success
Listening, learning and developing is what successful people do. But why do they do it? Well, if you believe that you know everything you need to know about a subject matter or running a business or managing your team, then you will be missing out on new ideas and different ways of thinking.
Jim Rohn, American entrepreneur and author, once said: “Work harder on yourself than you do on your job.” By this he means that learning and developing will increase your personal value and give you the right mindset for success.
It’s a well-known fact that learning and staying mentally active keeps your brain healthy and functioning at a high level. Scientists believe that creativity is essentially the ability to apply skills or learning from one situation and apply them to another. If you’re always learning you will be able to transfer your knowledge and understanding to new challenges and ‘come up with’ creative solutions.
Let us know what's on your ‘to read' list.
For more on this topic, listen to Episode 085 of the Fluid Business Podcast.
Read more on The Levels Blog: How do you change the way you think?