Are you looking to get smarter and get a little more shrewd? I’ll assume your answer is yes if you are reading this.
Listen, you’re already bright and ambitious, but you should always be learning and growing. The process of learning is never-ending and if you feel you have all the answers and you are done learning for this life…you are doomed.
You’re not done learning…you never will be.
With that being said, here are the 4 best ways to constantly be learning and increasing your knowledge:
1. Read Books
My suggestion would be to go to the library or the bookstore at least once a week.
I know we all lead such busy lives and it can be hard to find time to get to the library, but I believe it’s a time investment that your future self will thank you for.
And you should try to carve out time for reading everyday. Obviously, some days will be hectic and you’ll find you are just too stressed and time-consumed to sit down and read a book, but most days you should have some spare time to read for a few minutes.
Instead of watching meaningless television, shut it off and pick up a book for 20 minutes. It does not matter what kind of book it is…whether it’s a novel, or an academic journal pertaining to your passion; it will increase your knowledge.
Reading sparks your mind and gets your ideas flowing.
Try finding books that revolve around your passion and reading those on a daily basis. You’ll find that you truly enjoy reading, even if you’ve never considered yourself a reader.
I never considered myself a reader. In fact, I hated reading growing up and always dreaded all the lousy books I had to read for English class. It wasn’t until I picked up a book on the topic of business that I realized, “Hey, this isn’t so bad!”.
Fast forward a few years, I love reading and I would not go a day without picking up a book.
It’s all about finding books on topics that ignite your passion and reading them on a regular basis. It’s the best way I know to increase your knowledge.
2. Listen to the spoken word
Listen to audio programs and seminars.
With the internet, their are all sorts of free stuff on the internet to listen to. Podcasts, audio tapes, iTunes, etc.
Find some podcasts to listen to about your passion. Get more knowledgable in an area that really fires you up.
Some people prefer listening to audio over reading a book. This is perfectly OKAY, and in fact if you are this type of person, you should be spending more time listening than reading. Whatever allows you to consume the most engaging knowledge and learn the fastest, do that.
3. Seek mentors and experts
If you are looking to get more knowledgable in a particular field or area of life, then it is crucial you find a mentor.
Someone who is already considered an expert in this area and can share with you their wisdom and experiences.
This person will be able to share with you mistakes and failures they made, which will help you shorten your learning curve and allow you to avoid fatal mistakes. They know what it takes to be successful in a certain area of life, and they can offer you direction.
Don’t limit yourself to one mentor. Always be seeking out advice of older people (or in some cases younger), who can tell you what you need to know.
4. Increase knowledge with your own experience
Do as much as you can and see as much as you can. The best way to learn is to actually go out and learn it firsthand.
There is only so much you can learn from a mentor or from a book. At some point, you will have to go out and try things out for yourself.
Most people are scared to go out and experience things firsthand because they don’t feel they are ready and they believe they are destined to fail. But don’t let yourself fall into this trap. The first 3 learning methods above will be of no use if you never actually put the knowledge into practice and go out and take action.
You will make mistakes. You will fail. But failure is not permanent. It’s important to go out and try things out for yourself so that you can make firsthand mistakes and learn from them.
Failure is just another stepping stone. Don’t let the fear of failure stop you from trying.
Go out and get first hand experience, and your learning curve will increase dramatically.
Invite failure and rejection into your life. Instead of avoiding failure and little mistakes, go at them head on and look them in the face. Accept them and figure out exactly why you made the mistake, and what you can do better next time.
Making mistakes firsthand is the best way to learn. You live it out, accept responsibility and then learn how to improve upon your mistakes next time.
You are young and you should learn as much as you can now, so that as you get older you will be smarter and wiser. Go get some experience and make mistakes often and quickly so that you become smarter and more successful as quick as possible.
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