You know that investing in your own personal and career development is one of the best investments you can possibly make.
The return is exponential as it infuses confidence and expertise into every aspect of your life, giving you greater opportunities to succeed.
But, mastering the art of learning and development isn’t easy. There are a lot of options for gaining new skills and knowledge, many more today with the availability of information and courses online. Many people still think of learning as an adult in the same way they thought of learning as a child in school – forced, boring and tedious. What they don’t realize is that they can control their own learning, making it exactly what they need and want it to be.
How do you become a master of your own learning, truly gaining new and deeper understanding, enjoying the experience, and using your learning to change your life?
SEEK OUT OPPORTUNITIES
Just like you have to seek out good investments to grow your money, you have to seek out the best ways to invest in yourself. Choosing a topic to focus on is potentially the hardest aspect of your development as the options are endless. There are courses online, both free and paid, on any and every subject you can imagine. Many colleges have continuing education for in-person learning opportunities. You can find local classes relating to art, cooking, music, fitness, web development and so much more. Think about what skills and knowledge are most likely to propel your success, or that are mostly likely to bring you joy. Start with those topics and move on to others over time.
COMMIT TO YOUR LEARNING
Often during our formal education growing up, we were required to take classes we didn’t care much about or we had no interest in. We did the work simply because had to in order to pass and move on to the next grade or level. Learning as an adult can be so much more than this. Choosing topics that truly interest you and will truly benefit you allows you to fully commit to your learning. The more commitment you have, the more you will learn and the more it will impact you.
As with many other things in life, learning and development can be much more fun and interesting when you share it with someone else. You are more likely to follow through, more likely to retain the information and more likely to want to continue learning. Get a friend to sign up for a local class with you. Join the online discussions and groups associated with online courses. Share your learning with family, friends and coworkers.
Any subject matter has room for experimentation. Some things such as cooking, art, web development, or fitness are easier to test and try out, but you can do the same with other skills and knowledge. If you are learning communication skills, experiment with the way you speak to others or how you introduce yourself. If you are learning about mindfulness, try meditation in different places or uses different audio guides. If you are learning about creativity and innovation, apply your learning to every situation you can. Experimentation will make your learning more fun and you will gain so much knowledge and experience from the results of your experiments.
CONSIDER ONE-ON-ONE COACHING
Most learning today comes in some type of self-guided or classroom setting – books, online courses, or live classes. However, there are opportunities for more personal and direct learning in the form of coaches. Think of personal trainers, nutritionists, career coaches or life coaches. These professionals have specific training and expertise in their field to help you get exactly what you need, whether it be broad knowledge or very specific skills. The personal attention and guidance can accelerate your learning and propel your success even quicker than learning on your own.
Learning and developing, whether it be for career momentum or personal growth, enriches your life in so many ways. Gaining skills in knowledge in one area will affect your view and perception on every other area in your life. The investments you make in learning and development will be returned you exponentially.
Tell us about your personal and career development. How do you continuously learn and improve?