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Published on November 4, 2019

13 Ways to Be More Eager to Learn and Succeed in Life

13 Ways to Be More Eager to Learn and Succeed in Life

Every good thing starts with a desire or eagerness to do something. The same goes for your success stories. The more you keep pushing yourself to be knowledgeable, the clearer the way to success becomes.

Curiosity not only helps you in excelling at the professional front, but a study found that curiosity also improves memory and learning.[1] The study revealed that curiosity releases a chemical linked with motivation, dopamine. Dopamine could motivate you more than any words ever could!

Undoubtedly, without a genuine interest or curiosity to learn, you cannot expect yourself to be naturally inclined to learn new things. Eagerness to learn is where your success starts. Let’s not forget that Newton discovered gravity when he was curious as to why the apple fell on the ground rather than going upwards. Similarly, Alexander Fleming discovered Penicillin as he was curious to have a better germs killer. And the list is endless.

So, how to be more eager to learn and grow into a more successful person?

Here are 13 ways you can naturally increase your eagerness to learn and keep feeding your curiosity to stay on your learning goals.

1. Just Show Your Eagerness

Express your eagerness to learn more in your workplace. Take up every learning opportunity that is presented to hone your skills. You can also continue taking informational interviews and job shadows to keep your curiosity burning. Keep asking more questions and show that you are enthusiastic to learn.

Also, reflect your curiosity towards learning by attending seminars, getting certifications, and enrolling yourself in online courses.

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2. Stay Updated

Be it technical or general news, try to be updated on the current scenarios. Stay on top of the news as it can be fodder for all your conversations and could play a vital role in widening your network.

Keep an eye on the latest trends in your field of work. You never know when something new pops up and becomes the next big thing.

3. Don’t Stop Developing Your Skills

Make it your goal to update your resume with new skills now and then. If there is anything that can never be taken away from you, it’s your acquired skills and knowledge. With job requirements changing every day, don’t let yourself fall behind and keep learning to keep giving your best.

4. Look for Challenges

The best way to learn something new is to start doing something new. Don’t put off your personal or professional projects when you can do them now.

Challenge yourself continuously and look for ways that can help you evolve your career. Gain expertise in what you master. Taking up difficult tasks can unleash your capabilities and discover your strengths and weaknesses.

5. Learn Lateral Thinking

Thinking outside the box lets you look for answers that could lead to innovation and improved solutions. You never know when a single thought could prove to be a seed for something huge.

Don’t restrict yourself to conventional methods when it comes to learning and developing your skills. Find out what works for you and apply it to your life. This article may inspire you: The Power of Deep Thinking: Essence of Creativity

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6. Be Open to New Experiences

When you are offered something new at work, try to accommodate it. If it’s a new task with an unfamiliar technology, don’t hesitate to take it up. If it is something that you have not tried before – accept the challenge.

Trying out new things can be a great way to have new learning experiences.

7. Start to Be Interesting

Being genuinely interested in something makes you interesting as well. It also makes you endearing to the people who are willing to share the knowledge.

By asking the right questions to satiate your curiosity, you can show your passion for learning and start up conversations with people of higher authority with confidence.

Your strong sense of curiosity shows you as truly who you are. Your ventures get the extra appeal from your mentors or leaders when it shows its ability to continuously evolve.

8. Gain Initial Knowledge

While it is quite common to be curious about something you don’t know, what keeps you more curious is when you start learning it. Having an initial knowledge of any subject will let your curiosity flow in the right direction. You will know what questions you need answered. And this also makes way for focused learning.

9. Ask Questions

Put yourself in a place where it is easy for you to ask questions. An environment that is welcoming of curiosity is a great one for intelligent minds to thrive. Remove any barrier that could stop you from being curious.

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Here’re some techniques to help you ask questions: How to Be Amazingly Good at Asking Questions

10. Surround Yourself with the Right Contacts

You are an approximation of the people you mostly spend time with. It is inevitable that your close circle has a definite influence on your behavior and life paths. Hence, it’s important to collect wisdom from those who are around you and thus by surrounding yourself with the right people, you can stay curious and keep evolving.

Here’re some examples of the people to surround yourself with:

  • One person with more experience in your future goals.
  • A peer who excels in skills and accomplishments that you don’t, someone whom you can reach out to.
  • Someone younger but is on the same road as you are.

Having the above three kinds of people in your circle is not to compare yourself but to have open-minded individuals who can share their knowledge and experiences you need to keep pursuing your goals.

11. Find More Meaning to Life

Not being curious can make your life monotonous and boring. When you have the drive to find meanings to all things around you, you become naturally curious.

A curious mind is more satisfied as it knows there is more to life than existing. You will keep finding new ways to enjoy and experience life.

Never settle. Keep expecting bigger things from life: How to Live a Meaningful Life: 10 Inspiring Ideas to Find Meaning

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12. Take Action to Stay Motivated

Set a goal and be motivated to commit to accomplishing it. You can draw up work schedules or learning schedules to keep you on track. The sense of pride and satisfaction you get from accomplishing something adds all the flavor you look for in life.

Don’t give up on yourself and stay motivated to keep tasting the sense info accomplishment. The more driven and motivated you are, the more naturally curious you will be.

13. Get Better at What Makes You Happy

A core need for a healthy mind is confidence and self-efficacy. This comes from your conviction on your abilities. When you learn out of your own interest, it shows you new ways to get better at something and makes you confident and maintain good self-esteem. Your achievements and accomplishments cement this feeling.

Final Thoughts

Learning, as an adult, makes it easy for you to behave well in social situations. The constant drive to mastery is fuel to progress. It stimulates your creativity and helps you see the world from a different perspective.

Knowledge gives you the ability to see connections you may have not noticed earlier. Your curiosity boosts your creativity and your creative solutions will keep getting you curious to attain higher levels of perfection.

That said, learning, unlike any other activity, requires active participation and trains your mind and body to live to its fullest potential. Try not to let go of any learning experience. Always keep your curiosity mode switched on!

More About Learning

Featured photo credit: Alex Samuels via unsplash.com

Reference

More by this author

Leon Ho

Founder & CEO of Lifehack

What Is Creativity? We All Have It, and Need It Easily Distracted? Here’s How to Regain Your Focus How to Stay Focused at Work by Using Deep Work What are Goals? Achieve More By Changing Your Perspectives How to Build New Habits With An Accountability Partner

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

5 Proven Memorization Techniques to Make the Most of Your Memory

5 Proven Memorization Techniques to Make the Most of Your Memory

Do you forget stuff every now and then? Are you trying to enhance your memory but not sure how?

All you need is the right memorization techniques to make the most of your memory.

The human brain is fascinating. More specifically, the vast interconnections within our mind. Mendel Kaelen compares the human brain to a hill covered in snow,

“Think of the brain as a hill covered in snow, and thoughts as sleds gliding down that hill. As one sled after another goes down the hill a small number of main trails will appear in the snow. And every time a new sled goes down, it will be drawn into preexisting trails, almost like a magnet. In time it becomes more and more difficulty to glide down the hill on any other path or in a different direction.”

The intent of Kaelen’s discussion is to think of new ways to temporarily flatten the snow. Kaelen remarked,

“The deeply worn trails disappear, and suddenly the sled can go in other directions, exploring new landscapes and, literally, creating new pathways.”

The idea here is to temporarily rewire your brain, or as Michael Pollan remarked in How to Change Your Mind,

“The power to shake the snow globe, disrupting unhealthy patterns of thought and creating a space of flexibility-entropy-in which more salubrious patterns and narratives have an opportunity to coalesce as the snow slowly settles.”

So, how can we rewire our brain allowing deeply worn connections to disappear and new connections to form? The answer is quite simple. We must change the way we store information in our mind.

    Let’s examine 5 specific memorization techniques that will change the way you think and remember information.

    1. Build a Memory Palace

      What is it?

      The method of loci[1] (aka memory palace) is a method of memory enhancement using visualizations with the use of spatial memory. It uses familiar information about your environment to quickly recall information. It is a method that was discussed by Cicero in an ancient dialogue called De Oratore.

      How to use it?

      Ron White discusses in How to Memorize Fast and Easily: Build a Memory Palace, that it’s essentially a room or building that you have memorized and you use locations in the room to store data. Ron informs us,

      “You memorize locations in a room and then you later go back to those locations to retrieve the data that you want to remember.”

      Example

      An easy 5-step example, in the form of a Wiki, can be found at Artofmemory.com. Let’s examine the the steps:

      • Step 1. Choose a place that you know well. For example, your house or office.
      • Step 2. Plan the route and pick specific locations in your route. For example, your front door, bathroom kitchen, etc.
      • Step 3. Decide what you want to memorize. For example, geography, list of items, answers for a test, etc.
      • Step 4. Place one or two items, with a mental image, and place them in your memory palace. Exaggerate your images. For example, use nudity or crazy images forcing it to stick in your mind.
      • Step 5. Make the image into a mnemonic.

      You can learn more about this technique here: How to Build a Memory Palace to Remember More of Everything

      2. Mnemonic

        What is it?

        A mnemonic is a memory device that aids in retention and/or retrieval of information. Mnemonic systems are techniques consciously used to improve memory by helping us use information already stored in long-term memory to make memorization easier.[2]

        How to use it?

        Mnemonics make use of retrieval cues to encode information in our brain allowing for efficient storage and retrieval of the information. The trick is to learn how to easily create mnemonics. If you find that you struggle with creating your own, try the following website: Mnemonic Generator.

        Example

        I recently came across a video using mnemonics to memorize countries. Memorizing Countries using Mnemonics is a video created as an introduction to a class for using memory techniques to learn the names of countries on maps.

        I actively search for videos that provide enormous educational value, yet receive very little exposure. At the time of this writing, this video has received less than 4k views. Let’s examine the video.

        Goal: Create a mnemonic to memorize the countries in the Caribbean (just the countries you need to learn).

        Step 1. Looking at a map – write out each country (for which five were chosen).

        Cuba, Jamaica, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico.

        Step 2. Write the first letter of each country vertically.

        C

        J

        H

        D

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        P

        Step 3. Create a sentence or phrase.

        Cubs

        Just

        Hate

        Doing

        Push-ups

        Cubs just hate doing push-ups. (Cuba Jamaica Haiti Dominican Republic Puerto Rico)

        3. Mnemonic Peg System

          What is it?

          According to Artofmemory.com, a mnemonic peg system is a technique for memorizing lists and it works by memorizing a list of words that are easy to associate with the numbers they represent.[3] These objects are the pegs of the system.

          How to use it?

          The trick is to create a Number Rhyme System with each number having a rhyming mnemonic keyword.

          Example

          Let’s look at an example of a Number Rhyme System:[4]

          0 = hero

          1 = gun

          2 = shoe

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          3 = tree

          4 = door

          5 = hive

          6 = sticks

          7 = heaven

          8 = gate

          9 = line

          Another technique like the Peg system is the Number Shape System.[5] Here you are assigning mnemonic images based on the shape of the number. Watch the following video for an example of this system: Number Shape System for Memorizing Numbers.

          4. Chunking

            What is it?

            Chunking is a way to remember large bits of information by chunking them into smaller pieces of information. We are more likely to then remember the information when we put the small pieces back together to see the entire picture.

            How to use it?

            In the video Chunking – A Learning Technique, we can see that there are several ways to chunk information.

            Example

            Let’s examine a simple example using a nine-digit number.

            Step 1. What is the number you are trying to remember?

            081127882

            Step 2. Cut the number into smaller pieces through chunking.

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            081 – 127 – 882

            Let’s look at one more example from the same video.

            “Piano teachers will first demonstrate an entire song to students. They will then ask their students to practice one measure at a time. Once the part has been learned and the neural connections in the brain have been built, then students go on to the next measure. After all chunks have been played separately, they are combined until the entire piece is connected.”

            5. Transfer of Learning

              What is it?

              Transfer of learning is a way to learn something in one area and apply it in another. Authors of Thinking at Every Desk, Derek and Laura Cabrera inform us about the transfer of learning,

              “If a student has a high transfer skills, she can learn one thing and then teach herself 10, 50, or 100 additional things.”

              How to use it?

              There are two specific ways to use it:

              1. Vertical Transfer (aka Far Transfer). Think of learning something in grade school and applying it another grade or later in life.
              2. Horizontal Transfer (aka Near Transfer). Think of learning a concept in history and applying it in math.

              Example

              I provide a detailed step-by-step example for this technique in this article:

              Learn How to Learn: How to Understand and Connect Difficult Ideas Easily

              The Bottom Line

              The key to using the techniques discussed here is to remember that we must actively think about information.

              We cannot simply drill information into our brain through rote memorization. We must change the way we think about memorization. We must find a way to “shake the snow-globe” in our mind or flatten the snow so that we can create new learning paths.

              Or as Derek and Laura Cabrera point out, we must insert “Thinking” into the equation,

              “Information X Thinking = Knowledge”

              More About Enhancing Memories

              Featured photo credit: Nong Vang via unsplash.com

              Reference

              [1] Remember Everything: Memory Palaces and the Method of Loci
              [2] The Learning Center Exchange: 9 Types of Mnemonics for Better Memory
              [3] Art of Memory: Mnemonic Peg System
              [4] Art of Memory: Number Rhyme System
              [5] Art of Memory: Number Shape System

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