- Elon Musk, Investor & Entrepreneur
How do you learn? Are you a visual learner or an auditory learner? Here is an interesting question. How fast do you learn? How can you learn faster? Is it possible to increase the speed with which you learn and retain what you learn with instant recall?
Well, we are all different and each of us has our own way of taking in knowledge. Some people anchor what they learn to a physical sensation like snapping their fingers or clapping their hands. Others figure out ways to speed read through several books in rapid succession. However, you learn, there are ways to upgrade your capacity to learn more, learn faster, and accelerate your learning curve.
But according to some researchers, these learning techniques may make it harder to learn and more difficult to learn at a faster pace. For instance, speed reading is not the accelerated learning shortcut we once thought it was. The reason is most people have a hard time remembering what they are reading as the skim through the pages.
THE REAL SECRET
The real secret to accelerated learning is an applied strategy. In the military, they have something called the force multiplier effect. That is when they come to the target from every possible angle. They come from the I air, land, and sea. They send tanks, infantry, and drones into combat from every possible angle. The target is overwhelmed into submission.
That is what you should do if you really want to accelerate your learning, retain what you learn, and have it at the top of your mind at your command. Take three, four, or five of the individual accelerated learning techniques and apply them like a quilt over your study habits. So, what are some accelerated learning techniques? Let me point some out.
Asking may be the apex learning method. Most people will probably say, “Yeah, I get it. Asking questions is how we learn.” But you are missing the key ingredient. You have got to ask the right questions. You have got to ask questions that stimulate a learning experience.
Having a ready supply of open-ended questions to ask when you are learning about a topic is a great way to keep your mind open. You want to make sure you can find the answers to the problems you are trying to solve. Especially if you are learning a new skill.
KNOW YOUR REASON WHY
Having a purpose is one of the time-tested keys to success. It is important to know your purpose for learning the topics you are choosing to learn. Knowing why it is so important to you on a personal level gives your mind a subconscious reason to propel your learning experience forward.
The mind will increase its capacity to absorb information if on a subconscious level it has a purpose. This has been proven time and again by scientists and philosophers throughout the ages. Some people like to develop a learning purpose statement. It provides a focal point for the conscious and subconscious mind to meet.
BEGIN WITH FOUNDATIONAL INFORMATION
Whatever the topic you are trying to learn it is always a good idea to learn everything you can about that topic very basic elements. Start from the simplest level of understanding and expand upward on that. Every topic of study has a foundational structure for it. If you learn that basic structure at the beginning of your research, you will have it to fall back on when you get into the more complex concepts later on.
This may seem like common sense, but it is proved to be very elusive. Most people will skim over the basic foundational information. They somehow think it is beneath them. However, more and more people who are trying to accelerate they are the ability to learn are realizing the power of getting the very basics out of the way.
SET SPECIFIC GOALS
Probably the most important thing you can have on your learning journey is a worthy goal. Make sure you are incredibly clear about the goal you have in mind. Set a date. Stick to it. Give yourself a sense of discipline and targeting that creates drive and motivation. You can do that by setting a strong goal.
Make sure you are setting reasonable goals. You do not want to set a goal to climb a rockface cliff when you are just started to get into advanced hiking. You will not have the skill sets required. If you cannot make the assent, you will be sorely disappointed. Or worse, you could be dead.
LEARN ABOUT LEARNING
If you are reading this article, you are already interested in growing your learning prowess. Well, deepen that awareness. Strengthen your learning arsenal by staying on top of the latest in learning technology. Psychologists, neurologists, and educators all over the world have studied how learning works. Their research is available through academia, online, and in bookstores.
Some high-level learning methods have started to make it into mainstream awareness. Things like elaborative interrogation, self-explanation, interleaved practice, and distributed practice. Mindfulness training and learning meditation practice are also valuable learning methods you could put to good use.
Of the countless learning methods out there, it is always wise to make sure you’re applying them tactfully and strategically. Combining learning methods will ensure you get a well-rounded learning experience and accelerate the speed with which you learn as well as the volume of knowledge you can retain.
However, you learn whether by auditory learning, visuals, reading, physical, or some combination of all of those, know that you can improve. It is always possible to accelerate your learning speed. You can increase the amount of information you can take in and the degree to which you can recall that which you have learned. All it takes is a little bit of strategic forethought, patience, and the drive to get the job done. Set your goals, know your purpose, dive in, and have fun!
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Thought leaders & celebrities share their tactics for success on the Lisnic podcast by Lisa Teh & Nick Bell