Monday, August 27, 2012

Alice Reads: How to Become a Lifelong Learner

I really enjoy books that offer thought-provoking lists that spark ideas. I was reading Lists to Live By (Book 1), a compilation by Alice Gray, Steve Stephens, and John Van Diest, and came across this particular list (p. 36-37) that I think will benefit you too.

BUT, before you read the list, here's a picture of a lotus I took in Bangkok during my vacation earlier this month.

  1. Start with your attitude. Lifelong learning begins with a heart that desires change, wisdom, and application.
  2. Ask questions. Learners ask good question. They possess an insatiable curiosity--a longing to know, discover, inquire. Ask questions that get below the surface.
  3. Join others. Collaborative learning--in classes, small groups, with friends and colleagues--allows us to benefit from diverse perspectives and approaches. People are a gold mine of learning that is tapped through conversation.
  4. Check out the other side. Take time to understand another point of view, even if it radically contradicts yours. You may see things in a new light, or you may have your old convictions strengthened. Personal convictions that are never tested remain flabby.
  5. Read broadly. Include a diversity of books, authors, and topics. Resist the temptation to read only those books that reinforce what you already believe.
  6. Keep a journal. Recording what we learn captures our growth in wisdom.
  7. Experiment. Try new approaches and ideas. Age does not affect your ability to learn. An eighty-year-old can learn to surf the net like an eighteen-year-old.
  8. Apply what you know. Our depth of understanding is often directly related to our ability to apply what we've learned. Application takes knowledge from the head to the heart.

Point no. 5 (Read broadly) is my favorite! How about you?