Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Learn Until You Die

My teachers always said nonsense about becoming a “life long learner.” I always chuckled to myself when they said funny stuff like that. My plan was to finish school off as soon as possible and never look back. My teachers had the facts a little off: everyone becomes a life long learner.

When I’m playing Fallout 3--killing irradiated insects in a post-apocalyptic world--I’m learning about a world that Bethesda Game Studios made. I’m learning where to find stashes of ammunition and how many super mutants I can take on without using up my health packs. When I’m watching Lost, I’m learning about the characters, plot, and themes that the writers put into it.

Everyone is a life long learner. The problem isn’t learning, the problem is actually choosing topics intentionally.

Once I came to the realization that--like it or not--I’m going to spend the rest of my life learning, it just made sense that I’d want something useful jammed between my ears. On the up side, there are so many ways to learn. I learn soccer by playing. If I’m tired of playing, I can watch a video on dog breeding, or listen to a podcast on personal finance. I can take a class on speaking, go to a seminar on leading, read a book on coffee, interview someone about traveling, build a bed-frame, taste some wines, or sing a solo. Once I got off the couch, I found out there’s a whole world of exciting stuff out there.

So like it or not, we’re going to be lifetime learners. That hard part is deciding what kind we want to be. Don’t drift through, make a decision. What have you learned this week?

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