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6 Things About Life You Can’t Learn From Reading

6 Things About Life You Can’t Learn From Reading

Remember the park scene in Good Will Hunting where Robin Williams reminds Matt Damon that just because he can quote from books doesn’t mean that he knows what he’s talking about. It’s considered one of the best scenes in (arguably) one of the best movies in cinematic history.

There’s a world of difference between reading something and applying it; anyone can repeat theory, but experience is where you’ll truly learn what it takes to go from point A to point B. Although your neighbor, classmate, or coworker can repeat the words from Mark Cuban’s biography, only Cuban himself truly understands what it took for him to get where he’s at – everyone else is just repeating the story.

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Some things need to be experienced to truly be internalized. Here are some things about life (skills, lessons, etc.) that you can’t learn just by reading about them:

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reading glasses Lifehack Versability

    I’m entirely sure this isn’t how reading glasses are supposed to work…

    Reading Can’t Teach You How to Close a Sale…

    You can read every sales manual in the world; you can even follow a generic script that’s “guaranteed to work.” All the reading in the world won’t give you the instinct necessary to close a sale and get that payment. If sales were as easy as reading a book, everyone would be selling books on how to sell, and everyone would be buying that book…and it would all just cancel out.

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    Reading Won’t Teach You How to Leave a Job…

    Quitting a job is something that everyone has advice for, but at the end of the day, you just have to do it. Leaving a job is like skydiving in that the anticipation is often worse than the actual event (unless, of course, you die). The butterflies in your stomach, your manager’s reaction – no matter how prepared you think you are, you won’t truly know the effects of quitting your job until you do it.

    Reading Doesn’t Teach You How to Write…

    Ok, yes…reading does teach literacy, which involves writing as well. What it doesn’t teach you, however, is how to truly open yourself up and write something meaningful – if it were that easy, every wannabe rapper would be on the cover of The Source magazine. The only way to learn how to write is to write…and write…and write…and…well, you get the idea.

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    Reading Won’t Teach You How to Overcome Failure…

    You can read all the steps and how-tos about recovering from failure, learning valuable life lessons on the way, but if it were that easy, there wouldn’t be so many cynics in the world. People are cynical because they’ve failed at something and decided it’s an impossible task not only for them, but for anyone. What lesson you learn from failure depends entirely on how you internalize the lesson and your personal thoughts and feelings are not something you can read about.

    Reading Doesn’t Teach You How to Say No…

    Rejecting another person is a difficult thing to do, especially when that person is particularly pushy or motivated to convince you. No matter how many books you read about confidence and body language, you have to actually execute it repeatedly if it’s ever going to work.

    Reading Can’t Teach Love…

    No amount of romance novels, porn, or relationship/dating manuals can explain what it’s like to experience love. When you’re a kid, you think falling in love is everything, and losing that love can feel suffocating and trap you in a mental prison. As you get older, you realize how much heartbreak you face in life – explaining those lessons to a young idealist as you once were, however, is impossible.

    As you can see, reading is fundamental, but it doesn’t teach you everything in life. Being well-read is important, and quoting literature is seen as a sign of intelligence in human society. Creating your own story however, is just as important as understanding the stories of others. If you want to be a human being and not just a robot, go out into the world and live, rather than sitting online or in a library, reading about other people’s experiences. You have more to gain than lose.

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    Last Updated on December 2, 2018

    7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

    7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

    When giving a presentation or speech, you have to engage your audience effectively in order to truly get your point across. Unlike a written editorial or newsletter, your speech is fleeting; once you’ve said everything you set out to say, you don’t get a second chance to have your voice heard in that specific arena.

    You need to make sure your audience hangs on to every word you say, from your introduction to your wrap-up. You can do so by:

    1. Connecting them with each other

    Picture your typical rock concert. What’s the first thing the singer says to the crowd after jumping out on stage? “Hello (insert city name here)!” Just acknowledging that he’s coherent enough to know where he is is enough for the audience to go wild and get into the show.

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    It makes each individual feel as if they’re a part of something bigger. The same goes for any public speaking event. When an audience hears, “You’re all here because you care deeply about wildlife preservation,” it gives them a sense that they’re not just there to listen, but they’re there to connect with the like-minded people all around them.

    2. Connect with their emotions

    Speakers always try to get their audience emotionally involved in whatever topic they’re discussing. There are a variety of ways in which to do this, such as using statistics, stories, pictures or videos that really show the importance of the topic at hand.

    For example, showing pictures of the aftermath of an accident related to drunk driving will certainly send a specific message to an audience of teenagers and young adults. While doing so might be emotionally nerve-racking to the crowd, it may be necessary to get your point across and engage them fully.

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    3. Keep going back to the beginning

    Revisit your theme throughout your presentation. Although you should give your audience the credit they deserve and know that they can follow along, linking back to your initial thesis can act as a subconscious reminder of why what you’re currently telling them is important.

    On the other hand, if you simply mention your theme or the point of your speech at the beginning and never mention it again, it gives your audience the impression that it’s not really that important.

    4. Link to your audience’s motivation

    After you’ve acknowledged your audience’s common interests in being present, discuss their motivation for being there. Be specific. Using the previous example, if your audience clearly cares about wildlife preservation, discuss what can be done to help save endangered species’ from extinction.

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    Don’t just give them cold, hard facts; use the facts to make a point that they can use to better themselves or the world in some way.

    5. Entertain them

    While not all speeches or presentations are meant to be entertaining in a comedic way, audiences will become thoroughly engaged in anecdotes that relate to the overall theme of the speech. We discussed appealing to emotions, and that’s exactly what a speaker sets out to do when he tells a story from his past or that of a well-known historical figure.

    Speakers usually tell more than one story in order to show that the first one they told isn’t simply an anomaly, and that whatever outcome they’re attempting to prove will consistently reoccur, given certain circumstances.

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    6. Appeal to loyalty

    Just like the musician mentioning the town he’s playing in will get the audience ready to rock, speakers need to appeal to their audience’s loyalty to their country, company, product or cause. Show them how important it is that they’re present and listening to your speech by making your words hit home to each individual.

    In doing so, the members of your audience will feel as if you’re speaking directly to them while you’re addressing the entire crowd.

    7. Tell them the benefits of the presentation

    Early on in your presentation, you should tell your audience exactly what they’ll learn, and exactly how they’ll learn it. Don’t expect them to listen if they don’t have clear-cut information to listen for. On the other hand, if they know what to listen for, they’ll be more apt to stay engaged throughout your entire presentation so they don’t miss anything.

    Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm4.staticflickr.com

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