Learning is hard, it requires self-discipline to learn. But its a misconception today that learning should be fun & interesting and if it’s not fun, skip it and move on to something different. In fact, this is a big problem for the coming generation as they misconstrue that learning can only be when it’s interesting.
Whereas we know that initial attraction to a subject or activity is very different from actual learning. Actual learning requires hard work, self-discipline, and a lot of patience.
Learn what you are interested in, really?
As a student, if we only learn what we are interested in then we will never learn anything. Think about it, what have you learned in Maths? Guitar? any Subjects? unless you are pushed to learn, practice & kept working on it on regular basis.
Yes, the initial attraction may help to jump into it mainly because we get motivated by seeing toppers, seniors(parents), or successful people in that field but that’s just the first attraction, as soon as we dive in, if we don’t endure hard work and be patient we cannot learn & succeed.
As the saying goes
All “overnight” successes take 10 years of learning – Jeff buzos
Yes, there are rare individuals (Gifted ones) who are born with deep interests in one area but still if they do not pursue it with willpower, they haven’t been successful.
Another problem with “Learning what you are interested in”, is that our interest changes as we grow. It changes based on our environment, surroundings, and peers.
So if I truely follow my interests, I will not learning anything, as interests keeps changing.
Even kids today get too many choices in school. Today an eleven-year-old student is given many different options to choose from, Chess, Guitar (or any musical instrument), Cricket, Gymnastics, whatnot, you name it and it’s available in schools. Are they able to learn? Nope. Because of initial dabbling, they know a bit but couldn’t learn or perform it even to a basic level.
Once the kid crosses an age, by giving choices and allow switching between them they develop the tendency to shift goals as soon as the hard part of learning starts. These choices and switching, also lead to Attention deficit, they cannot focus on one single thing for long.
I would rather that today’s schools let them focus on one thing and teach them to learn the subject or activity at a much deeper level. And be honest with them that learning isn’t fun.
When you know how to learn one thing, then you get good at learning, which goes a long way in life to achieve success.
The most successful people in the world are always lifelong learners. They fully understand that their level of education directly determines their quality of life.-Jim Rohn
So what we can do as a student (If want to learn) or teacher, parent, or seniors guiding kids to learn?
Do lot of research on what you want to learn and why:
Before choosing any activity or subject understand what drives you and how it can be achieved by taking this path, do a lot of introspection. Do research on the subject or topic, the best part is in today’s digital era it’s easier to find a lot of details about any topics and then choose.
The end goal is to understand what you will achieve or envisage what you will become if you go down this path. In fact, this also helps keep us motivated to follow the path.
For kids, parents/teachers can help them envisage their dreams. Also what & how they want to do way forward and decide.
Apply brain as well as heart before choosing to learn.
Talk to seniors/experts in that field if possible:
Talk to seniors, teachers, or relatives who have already achieved a level and understand from them. What they feel after going thru the journey in this field? That will help you in deciding whether it suits you or not.
Once decided don’t switch or allow switching:
Learning anything big or small will have hurdles and need hard work, but unless we cross them we will not learn. Also apart from the subject or topic, the biggest learning is “How to learn”, which is very different for every individual, there is no set path. But continuous learning is the most important skill you need to develop for a successful life.
Environment impacts a lot:
Lastly get a good Mentor & Peers who are learning the same, this is the biggest reason to get into a good college, school, or community which has a renowned faculty and environment for that subject or activity. Moreover, this gives you a social nudge (Peers, Collagaes) to be motivated and keep learning and growing in the chosen field.
Follow a routine for learning:
Set a daily routine to learn, study, and practice. This will help make learning much easier than just random bouts of learning doses. Make it a habit, so that at later stages, if you want to learn something similar, you can just replace the current subject with a new one and fit into that habit…
Overall Learning is critical for achieving success, happiness, and freedom in life. So let’s ensure we learn “how to learn” and impart our coming generation(s) how to learn the best way possible.
“Whatever advancements happen the way of learning will be the same” –Anonymous