We are all aware how our health suffers from a sedentary lifestyle. That is why we need to incorporate exercise into our habits so we keep our body healthy and we can function at our best. The same is true for our brains, after all the brain is also a muscle and just like any muscle that is not exercised, it will deteriorate in the long run.
So to exercise our brain, it needs a challenge and learning something new is the best way to challenge our brains and keep us mentally healthy. Learning any new maybe difficult but with dedication and effort, together with these tips, you should be able to enjoy your learning experience and be successful in your learning goals.
1. Deconstruct the Skill
Write down what you want to learn and break it down to the individual components. By breaking down the subject to its basic components, you will also be able to identify which component to learning first. For example, if you want to learn a new language, the very first thing you need to learn is their version of the alphabet. If you want to improve your knife skills in the kitchen, start with the basics before you go on to the more advanced techniques.
2. Set Milestones
Once you’ve determined the basic components, schedule your learning time for each component. Each time you complete learning a major component, set that as a milestone. This is your way of patting your back and congratulating yourself for completing a goal. It will also boost your confidence to complete the next milestone.
To celebrate a milestone, set yourself a reward so you are even more motivated to complete it.
3. Don’t Multi-task
Now that you have a learning plan and a schedule, it’s time to start doing the work. The most difficult part of learning anything new is how to start. Developing a new habit is always challenging and your preparation is important. So prepare for your first day of learning the day before. Have all your tools ready and your study area ready. Store away all distractions out of site. Put your phone on silent if you have to and close all your social media accounts if you’re taking a course online.
Your most important task when starting to learn something new is to focus. Don’t be tempted to multi-task.
3. Practice, Practice, Practice
Practice makes perfect and consistency key. Sometimes you may not feel like it but instead of finding an excuse, honor your schedule. You may not be confident enough to go to the next goal or you just suddenly feel lazy. Don’t succumb to negative self-talk. Review what you have learned so far if you have to. In the process, you may realise that you are ready to tackle the next component after all and that boost of confidence is sure to motivate you to continue with your learning schedule.
5.Get Immediate Feedback
If you’re enrolled in a class, ask your instructor to evaluate you and request recommendations to improve your learning habits even faster. Online courses can be more difficult so ask around for friends who can give you feedback. Fortunately, most online course offerings nowadays, also have a place for community support and feedback. So utilise the channels provided to get valuable feedback and insights on your learning level. This helps you identify areas that need improvement and maybe even provide external tools and resources that may be helpful to your learning.
We hope these tips help you in your goal to learning something new. Learning involves enriching the intellect and is one of the 6 dimensions of wellness; so it is an important aspect of your overall well-being.