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Learning Can Be Much Easier If You Follow This 5-Step Approach

Learning Can Be Much Easier If You Follow This 5-Step Approach

Learning a new concept can be a rewarding experience, yet it is frustrating when new information simply floats around in your head without sticking. Often times, we are forced to read a book repeatedly just to get the information to store in our memory.

Learning should not be simply about forced memory, and it should not be a difficult task. The mind is an amazing tool. Luckily, there are powerful methods that can assist us in truly grasping difficult concepts. The ADEPT Method for Learning is a practical approach to improving your brainpower. Incorporate this approach into your way of thinking and use it to learn everything with ease.[1]

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    Start with an Analogy

    A simple trick to improve how we learn is to compare it to something we already know. For example, how would you explain the function of a neuron (otherwise known as a brain cell)? What analogy would you use to explain how a neuron functions? How would you compare it to something the learner is familiar with?

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    Let’s give this analogy a shot: Neurons are like transportation systems. They carry neurotransmitters (we will refer to them as information) from one neuron to another, similar to how transportation systems transport people from one city to another.[2]

    Think with both sides of your brain by way of a Diagram

    Use a diagram if you are unable to find the correct words to describe a concept. A great resource for identifying diagrams to visualize and grasp difficult concepts is Pinterest. By using diagrams, we are able to visualize new and abstract ideas. Understanding complex and abstract ideas requires both sides of the brain to function together and form powerful connections.

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    Experience the idea by using an Example

    What should you do if you are confused about a topic? You can either ask someone to show you or you can attempt to figure it out for yourself. By figuring it out for yourself, your mind is then able to learn through connections. By using examples, it allows you to experience the idea. By exposing yourself to examples, you are able to formulate your own understanding of the concept.

    Describe the concept in Plain language

    By using The Feynman Technique, constructed by the late theoretical physicist Richard Feynman, we are able to take an abstract concept and explain it in Plain English. Feynman posits, “Explain it like I am 5.” This forces us to make it really simple, and allows us to truly comprehend the concept. Avoid using technical jargon and remember to keep it simple. If you are unable to describe the concept in Plain English, then you most likely do not truly understand it.

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    Convert your comprehension of the concept into a Technical description

    Once you have a basic understanding of the concept, the final step is to comprehend the technical description of it. By using the ADEPT method, we can start with a rough idea and sharpen it until we clearly identify the technical details. For example, if you have been using the ADEPT method to grasp the Pythagorean Theorem, you must then be able to provide the technical terminology (such as an explanation of the formula) for other people to use.[3]

      Follow this advice when using the ADEPT method: Find an intriguing Analogy to describe what it’s like; use Pinterest to help you find a Diagram; conduct a Google search to find websites for Examples; describe the concept in Plain English by visiting websites such as Reddit; and finally, use easy to access websites (such as Wikipedia) to convert your concept into a Technical Description.

      The ADEPT method is a powerful tool that will help you strengthen and comprehend concepts in a faster and more effective way.

      Reference

      More by this author

      Dr. Jamie Schwandt

      Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt & Red Team Critical Thinker

      How Cognitive Learning Benefits Your Brain 5 Proven Memorization Techniques to Make the Most of Your Memory 10 Best Brain Power Supplements That Will Supercharge Your Mind How to Upgrade Your Critical Thinking Skills and Make Smart Choices How to Reprogram Your Brain Like a Computer And Hack Your Habits

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      Published on October 14, 2019

      10 Organizational Skills Training Techniques for the Overwhelmed

      10 Organizational Skills Training Techniques for the Overwhelmed

      Do you constantly feel overwhelmed by the amount of tasks you have to complete at work? If so, then it may be time to look into some organizational skills training techniques.

      Organizational skills are an asset. They allow you to add structure to your day so that you meet deadlines, attend every meeting, and even have enough time to take your breaks (imagine that!). As transferable skills, they can also add value to your personal life.

      So, if being organized and able to perform at your very best at work, even when you’re inundated with duties, sounds appealing to you, then read on.

      Why You Need Organizational Skills Training

      According to the Cambridge Dictionary, organizational skills refers to:[1]

      “the ability to use your time, energy, resources, etc. in an effective way so that you achieve the things you want to achieve.”

      When you’re feeling overwhelmed at work (or anywhere really) achieving anything seems impossible. This is why organizational skills training is crucial. The skills you learn can help you to overcome the feeling of defeat so you can take command of your tasks again.

      The Benefits of Organizational Skills

      Having organizational skills allow you to not only be more organized, but to also be more productive and more effective. You’ll have greater control of your tasks and be able to accomplish more things. It can also reduce stress-levels, and experiencing less stress means leading a healthier lifestyle.

      Examples of organizational skills include:

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      As previously mentioned, while a major benefit for the workplace, they are also valuable in your personal life.

      Think about it, our personal lives are also filled with many tasks and activities. Whether it’s going to the bank or buy groceries, or doing household duties such as vacuuming or taking out the trash, each responsibility is basically a task that needs to be completed in order for our home lives to run as smoothly as possible.

      How to Learn Organizational Skills

      Many businesses and organizations provide organizational skills training, whether it’s a workshop, company presentation, online training course, or an all-out conference. Attending these events is a great start to learning organizational skills. Then, of course, you can set your own goals.

      For most people, organizational skills don’t come naturally. However, fortunately, just like any other skill, they’re learnable. Once you acquire an understanding of a skill, the more you practice it, the better you’ll get at it.

      If you’re completely new to all of this, your best bet is to start small. Set yourself one goal, select one thing you’d like to improve on, and repeat it regularly until it becomes a habit. Once you’re confident in maintaining the habit, you can add to your goal or expand on it.

      Starting small and gradually adding as you progress is a good course of action, as it can ensure that you actually achieve what you set out to accomplish. If you dive straight into the deep end, you risk being even more overwhelmed than before and may fail to meet expectations completely.

      Surrounding yourself with people that have particular behaviors is another way to learn organizational skills. Having a super organized team leader, manager, or head of business can greatly influence your own actions and behavior.

      10 Organizational Skills Training Techniques

      If you’ve noticed yourself feeling overwhelmed and stressed at work recently, then perhaps you could try out one of the following organizational skills training techniques. They could help you to get back control, focus on your tasks, and reduce stress-levels.

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      1. Make a List

      If you’re feeling swamped with tasks, creating a to-do list is great for taking back control of the things you need to do.

      By writing down your tasks in order of importance (make sure you prioritize your list!), you’ll have a visualization of what needs to get done.

      You’ll also get to experience the feeling of great relief when you get to cross a task off your to-do list when it’s completed!

      2. Don’t Rely on Your Memory

      Even if you have superhuman memory, it’s always a good idea to write everything down.

      From project deadlines, to customer details, to product prices, writing things down can serve as a reminder so you don’t forget the important things when you’re feeling overwhelmed.

      And with most of us carrying around smartphones, you’re never far from a tool where you can write something down.

      3. Schedule

      A huge part of being organized is knowing how to plan, and expert planning involves a lot of scheduling.

      Scheduling is taking a step further than creating a to-do list. Not only do you have the things you need to do recorded, but you have a timetable when you should complete them. This helps you to develop your time management skills as you’re expected to coordinate tasks and activities so that deadlines are met and everything is done on time.

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      4. Learn to Delegate

      Learning to delegate tasks is a valuable skill that will help to keep you organized. Not only will it lighten your workload, but it will sharpen your planning and prioritization skills as you will have to learn which tasks should be done by you and which tasks are okay to be given to someone else.

      5. Avoid Multitasking

      While the idea of attempting to do more than one task simultaneously may seem brilliant, in practice, it’s the complete opposite. Multitasking is known to actually lower your productivity as it diminishes your focus and attention and things become more difficult and take longer to complete.

      6. Minimize Interruptions

      It’s impossible to control every aspect of your environment but it doesn’t hurt to try. By minimizing interruptions while you’re at work, it gives you a better chance of completing them as effectively and efficiently as possible.

      Investing in noise-cancelling headphones or installing a social media block on your desktop are examples of ways you could reduce distractions.

      7. Reduce Clutter

      A notable organizational skills training technique is to create a filing system for your documents. Whether it’s at work or at home, we all accumulate documents that we may not currently need but are too afraid to throw away in case we will need it in the future.

      Having an organized system can allow you to locate necessary documents any time you need them. It also keeps them safeguarded which reduces the chance of losing something important. This filing system applies to both actual paperwork and digital documents.

      8. Organize Your Workspace

      Where we work greatly influences how we work. If you have a cluttered and messy workspace, then the chances of you working in an unorganized fashion can be very high.

      Keeping an organized workspace ensures that you’re able to perform at your most productive. You won’t waste time looking for things that have been misplaced and working in a clutter-free environment can be soothing for your mind.

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      9. Get Rid of What You Don’t Need

      Clutter is known to lead to stress and anxiety.[2] If you’re already feeling overwhelmed, then the sight of clutter can increase that feeling.

      Getting rid of things you no longer need clears out your environment and, hopefully, your mind as well.

      Done with that sticky-note? Throw it away! Inbox is filled to the brim with unread emails? Unsubscribe to newsletters you no longer read! Whatever you no longer require in your physical and digital life, get rid of it.

      Here’s a guide to help you declutter: How to Declutter Your Life and Reduce Stress (The Ultimate Guide)

      10. Tidy up Regularly

      While working, it can get easy for your desk to get untidy. You’re focused on work and so keeping everything at your desk in order is probably a lower priority. But it’s something to be conscious of. Doing a regular tidy up can ensure the mess on your desk doesn’t go overboard.

      Whether it’s a quick clean up every day, or a deep clean every month. Being aware of tidying up and fitting it into your routine will help keep you organized and less stressed.

      The Bottom Line

      Possessing organizational skills enables you to get back control of your tasks when you’re feeling overwhelmed and perform better at work. They can make you more productive, more efficient, and of course, more organized.

      Remember, they’re not only valuable at work! Because of their transferability, they can be beneficial in other areas of your life. And really, it doesn’t hurt to be organized at home and socially, as well as at work.

      Featured photo credit: Jeff Sheldon via unsplash.com

      Reference

      [1] Cambridge Dictionary: Organizational Skills
      [2] Psychology Today: Why Mess Causes Stress: 8 Reasons, 8 Remedies

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