We all know that being forced to learn can result in a lack of enthusiasm for the subjects you are supposed to be studying. Take mathematics at school for example. The chances are you were learning all about the intricacies of trigonometry and simultaneous equations, knowing full well that you would never use this knowledge in your future career as a chef, a hair stylist or landscape gardener.
Because this learning was forced upon you, school was compulsory, and you didn’t have a choice in what you were taught, you may have become disengaged. Kids these days don’t spend their days worrying about the causes of the French Revolution, and instead would rather be honing their Instagram selfies for posting.
Fast forward a decade or more when learning isn’t forced upon you, and the chances are that you have a newfound love for history, culture and the arts. As we grow older, we regain a sense of curiosity that is fed by documentaries, travel and good conversation. We are now in control of what we see, where we go and who we meet. Becoming empowered to take control of our own learning is life-affirming. Being a learner isn’t about sitting down in a classroom environment and being taught things by rote. It’s about getting out into the world, developing an understanding of cultures and learning different vocational and soft skills. Take a look at how everyone can become a lifelong learner.
In your professional life, the chances are you have worked hard to get to where you are in your career. You may have reached the dizzying heights of middle management, but you’re keen to get to the upper echelons of leadership. To do this, you may need to undertake another qualification to enhance your resume and skill set. MBAs, postgraduate courses and industry-specific certificates are all valid forms of qualification to prove your worth of being able to leap up the career ladder. You could view this site here to explore the sort of operations management degree you can attain if you are keen to enter into executive or procurement management.
Even if you aren’t in a management blue chip sort of corporation doesn’t mean that you can’t continually learn. Teachers will often enjoy in-house training and head to educational conferences. Doctors are learning how to use new medical equipment and how to implement new treatment plans all the time because of continual revolutionary advancements. It doesn’t matter what career path that you have chosen, there is always a way in which you can extend your professional knowledge.
If you love nothing more than getting your wanderlust kicks by hopping on a flight to a far-flung destination, then you are implicitly learning without even knowing it. Immersing yourself in a new culture, meeting different people and sampling the delights of foreign cuisine is all about learning how to appreciate diversity and difference. People joke about heading abroad to find themselves, but this is very much the case. If you take a jaunt halfway across the globe to enjoy a tour off the beaten track, you will inevitably return a totally different person. You will learn more about yourself, your likes, dislikes and what you want to achieve in life.
If you only speak English and only remember the basics from your language classes at school, it’s time to learn the lingo of a destination you wish to visit. Learning a language is empowering and can make you a more courteous traveller. Rather than simply talking more loudly in English to someone overseas, you can converse with them in their native tongue. This opens up a whole new level of learning to you.
Developing your understanding of a language could enable you to take a job overseas. Extending your professional reach is not only effective to fulfil personal ambitions, but you will also learn more nuanced leadership skills. You will need to manage people who speak little English. Getting used to the cultural quirks and different working patterns can take some getting used to, but this is part of the learning journey.
Becoming a lifelong learner isn’t always about heading back to higher education, although this could be an option. It is about being open to new experiences, making it your mission to learn at least one new thing a day, and having the patience to listen more closely to those around you. Your innate curiosity needs to be unleashed so question the status quo and enjoy being a lifelong learner.
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