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Learn By Doing | Scott H Young

Find ideas

If you don't have enough ideas to change your life, buy some personal development books and audio material, and search through the content around the web. You will find many ideas in a short time.

Most of the time, we have vague ideas but don't know what to do to make actual changes. This is because the knowing will come from the action. Start applying the ideas.

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Learn By Doing | Scott H Young

Learn By Doing | Scott H Young

https://www.scotthyoung.com/blog/2006/05/18/learn-by-doing/

scotthyoung.com

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Key Ideas

Learning comes from doing

Most people have a faulty idea about when they have actually learned something.

Learning doesn't come from reading or listening. Reading creates ideas and opportunities. You only learn something when you act on it.

Personal development books

Reading personal development books and articles is extremely valuable. The only problem is when you confuse this with real learning. 

Reading a book on exercise doesn't make you fit. Reading an article on time management doesn't make you productive.

Turning Ideas into Learning

We can increase our learning when we understand that reading is like a seed - the ideas you read about have the power to create incredible learning and understanding, but only if you act on it.

Pick a few ideas that you think have the potential to benefit your life most. Then allocate time, energy and resources to practice those ideas.

Find ideas

If you don't have enough ideas to change your life, buy some personal development books and audio material, and search through the content around the web. You will find many ideas in a short time.

Most of the time, we have vague ideas but don't know what to do to make actual changes. This is because the knowing will come from the action. Start applying the ideas.

Be Selective

Acting upon ideas takes a much larger investment of time, energy, and money than reading about them. That is why you have to be selective about what and how you apply the ideas.

Write down all the ideas you have for improving your life. From this list, select one idea and start working on it today.

Get an Education

If you want to develop skills in any area, don't just buy a book. Put yourself in situations where you are forced to learn by doing. 

If you want to become a good communicator, join organizations like Toastmasters and take up any opportunity you can to speak.

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Output comes from input

If you want to have a lot of good ideas, you need to expose yourself to good ideas.

This means reading books, having conversations with interesting people, seeking out new experiences,...

Have a capture mechanism

Creative ideas often come to you when you’re not deliberately trying to solve a problem, when your mind is relaxed.

That's why your creative process must include a system to capture ideas when you have them, so you can work on them later. The simplest mechanism is simply to have a list where you keep ideas.

Incubate your ideas

Regularly review your ideas lists. Incubation helps because just as a spontaneous connection can generate an idea, an incubated idea can spontaneously mature into a plan of action if you take care of it.

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Mark Twain

“It ain’t what you know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”

Mark Twain
The most useful learning
Most people think about learning as adding knowledge and skills. You now have a new fact in your mind that didn’t exist before.

The most useful learning isn’t usually a strict addition of new knowledge, but first unlearning something false or unhelpful.

Types of Unlearning
  • Straightforward refutation of the old idea. This complete refutation is atypical. More likely the new knowledge doesn’t contradict the old one, but it may modify it in some way.
  • The new knowledge revises a simpler picture by filling it with more complex details. This is similar to adding new knowledge, although because the older, simpler view of the issue has been overwritten with more detail, there is some unlearning going on.

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Routines and structure

Having no routine or structure is so much more draining mentally, physically, and emotionally than any routine could ever be. 

You're depriving your body and mind of the energy an...

Brian Tracy
Brian Tracy

"Good habits are hard to form but easy to live with. Bad habits are easy to form but hard to live with." 

No e-mails in the morning

If you immediately check your email or social media accounts when you wake up in the morning, you’re starting your day off in reactive mode instead of proactive. It means spending the best part of the day on other people's priorities.

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A habit of compounding growth

Reading is a habit of compounding growth. When reading, you'll learn more, and you'll generate ideas and motivation for making other changes.

Reading books means you're getting more concentra...

Put the book down

The real cause of reading too few books is that you don't enjoy it enough.

Don't feel compelled to finish a book that has become boring, predictable or unhelpful. Start a new one. You can have many books through various states of completion. Some won't be finished, and that's okay. Reading less is worse than having a few go unfinished.

Build an online library

An obstacle to your reading habit is not having enough interesting books waiting to be read.

Create a list of potentially good books. If you have a Kindle or eReader, get samples of any book you might want to read — Source your wishlist from suggestions from other writers and authors. When someone recommends a book on a blog or tweet, add it to your wishlist.

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Learning how to learn

Learning how to learn is a meta-skill. It is a critical skill for everyone who needs to pick up and master new concepts frequently.

Understanding what is learning and how our memory works wil...

Learning skills

Learning how to learn is critical for everyone. Most of us have to deal with a changing world and to learn how to manage tons of new information.

However, most of our learning methods are outdated and far from optimal. It may even be giving us an illusion of learning, like re-reading and highlighting that don't provide proper feedback to show what you haven't learned.

Focused and Diffuse Mode

Focused and diffuse modes provide two models for how we develop, elaborate, deepen and broaden connections. Both methods are important.

  • The focused mode of learning is about bringing related concepts together into a unit, called a chunk. 
  • The diffuse mode operates through a wider net of connecting general ideas across different fields. We use this diffuse mode while we sleep, exercise or daydream.

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Effort as Energy Expenditure
Effort as Energy Expenditure

Effort represents an investment of a fixed resource, like calories.

For this reason, running takes more effort than sitting. It takes more calories and strains muscles and joints. If y...

Effort as Attention

Paying attention seems to be linked to effort, since deliberate control of attention take effort.

Focus is only hard if we're trying to focus. If our attention is held automatically, focus is not an effort.

Effort as the Opposite of Habit

Effort could be seen as the opposite of something we do automatically. Effort then is what happens when we try to override an automatic pattern.

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Ways to improve your life
Ways to improve your life

There are a few different ways you can go about setting a goal or creating a new habit.

  • Target the minimum output. You focus on always doing at least a little bit so t...
When to Focus on the Minimum

Minimum targeting works well for establishing long-term habits.

A goal of, for instance, doing fifty push-ups every day might not be ideal for fitness, but doing something is better than doing nothing.

Another reason to focus on the minimum is that it assumes the difficulty is in starting. To start a process can often be the hardest. Then you want to set a lower threshold to make starting as easy as possible.

When to Target the Average

Focusing on the average makes sense when you're hoping to sustain something, even if it is not always a perfectly easy and consistent output.

It works when you are already putting in a bit of effort, but want to improve that effort over the long-term.

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