How many times have you tried to learn something new but ended up quitting before you made any real progress?
If you have, don’t feel too bad about it, as struggling to master a new skill is certainly no walk in the park. Most people find it hard to remember what they’ve learned; which inevitably makes their learning slow and painful.
However, if you’d love to learn but find it difficult, then you’ve come to the right place. In this guide, you’ll find dozens of proven techniques for learning anything fast.
So read on and discover how to become a superlearner…
Why Can’t People Learn Faster?
Years of observing people at college and at work have led me to discover 3 specific reasons why many people are unable to learn quickly and efficiently. But as well as pinpointing the problems; I’ve also found the solutions.
See if you can spot yourself in any or all of these learning blockers:
1. They don’t know the technique to learn/master something new
As you’ve probably experienced yourself, sometimes when wanting to learn something new you find yourself not knowing where to start.
For example, you might have wanted to learn how to play chess, but didn’t know the best way to do this. And because you didn’t know the best way, you either didn’t bother trying to learn the classic, 2-player strategy game, or you tried learning from multiple sources at the same time: books, videos, friends and family.
The problem with this scattered approach is that you will find it hard to focus and you’ll inevitably be given conflicting advice — which is unhelpful when you’re starting out.
The other problem is that by consulting books and asking friends for help, you might find that you’re not getting the latest information. For instance, your friends might not be aware of some of the amazing computer chess learning programs that are available online.
4 Learning Styles to Help You Learn Faster and Smarter: Different people learn differently. Some like to be shown how to do something, others learn better by reading about the chosen topic.
While Vanderbilt University recognizes more than 70 different learning styles, there are actually just 4 main styles that you need to be aware of:
- Visual (spatial) — Learners who learn best by seeing (e.g., through video or PowerPoint presentations).
- Auditory (aural) — Learners who learn best by hearing (e.g., through podcasts and audiobooks).
- Reading/writing — Learners who learn best by reading and writing (e.g., through books, magazines and websites).
- Kinesthetic (physical) — Learners who learn best by moving and doing (e.g., starting to learn to drive by getting behind the wheel).
Take our Learning Styles Quiz for free now to discover your learning style. It will just take you a few minutes to complete, but could save you countless hours in the future. That’s because by discovering the learning style that works best for your brain, you’ll be able to learn better and faster.
The 3 Stages of Learning That Help You Learn Effectively: From the moment we’re born, we’ve been learning new things every day. And without consciously thinking about it, we’ve used at least 1 of the 3 stages of learning to gain knowledge and skills. The 3 stages of learning are:
- Stage 1: Cognitive Learning — This style of learning encourages students to use their brains more effectively, by fully engaging in the learning process. For example, a student learning to dance will need constant support from their tutor to show and tell them what they need to do.
- Stage 2: Associative Learning — This style of learning happens when two unrelated elements (e.g., ideas, behaviors, sights and sounds) connect in our brains through a mental process known as conditioning. The student dancer has now begun to understand the skills they need and they are starting to see some consistency in their performance.
- Stage 3: Autonomous Learning — This style of learning allows learners to gain knowledge through independent efforts and to develop an ability to inquire and evaluate without the need for teachers and mentors. The student has now become a proficient dancer, and they are able to perform skills with accuracy and consistency and accuracy. They are also able to concentrate on complex tasks and they have the ability to adapt their performance where needed.
Finally, to go a little bit more in-depth on this topic, I recommend you check out our Learn Faster With the Stages of Learning online workbook:
This workbook will help you understand the stages of learning and your current stage of learning, enabling you to improve the way you learn and master the skills you want.
2. They don’t know how to hack their brain memory/performance to speed up learning
Many people struggle to recall what they’ve learned. They may put this down to having a bad memory, but as I’ll show in just a moment, it’s more to do with the way they are trying to learn.
Other people are good at remembering stuff, but they’re not so good a putting it into practice. For example, they may be able to tell you which companies are performing impressively on the global stock exchange; but if you asked them to help you set up an investment account — they probably wouldn’t have a clue.
Fortunately, there are some simple solutions to these learning issues…
Use the Power of a Digital Brain: Did you know that beyond your physical brain, there is a second brain you can call upon? It’s called the Digital Brain. If you’re unfamiliar with the term, then let me give you a quick overview of what exactly a Digital Brain is.
Put simply, a Digital Brain is simply an app or piece of software that allows you to quickly record and recall information.
I’m sure you’ll be familiar with some of these Digital Brain tools:
- Apple Notes
- Google Keep
Instead of relying on your memory when learning something new, you can instead turn the information over to your Digital Brain, thus freeing up your mind for other tasks and relieving yourself of the stress of trying to remember everything. To give you an example of this, instead of trying to remember the forecasted weather for the week, you could quickly and easily check this info on your phone, tablet or laptop.
Grab the following online guide to boosting your memory and turn yourself into a super learner. In this guide, you’ll learn how to make room in your brain for memories, learning and creativity:
Remember What You’ve Learned With Spaced Repetition: As you’ll read if you click through to the article, Spaced Repetition works like this: The more often you encounter certain bits of info, the less often you’ll need to refresh your memory of it. Sounds simple? That’s because it is! However, the Spaced Repetition technique lays out a specific map for when and how to take in new information. I’ve used this technique for years, and I can definitely testify to its effectiveness.
Want more inspiration? Then join our FREE Spark Your Learning Genius Fast Track online class. In this 30-minute class, you’ll learn a strategy that can help you quickly grasp new concepts and skills, and help save you hours of wasted mental energy and time using traditional methods.
3. They don’t know the best way to practice/revise in order to master a skill
From time to time you may have thought to yourself: “No matter how hard I practice or revise, I still don’t learn well.”
You may also have found yourself getting overwhelmed when there’s too much to learn or when things get too complicated or too difficult.
And then there is the common problem of not having enough spare time for practice and study.
What can you do about these things?
Use Deliberate Practice to Be Good at Almost Anything: What is Deliberate Practice? It’s a technique of breaking down the skill you want to acquire into separate components so you master each individual part of the skill. This technique shuns the idea of practicing something needlessly over and over again.
Read this article to get started: The Beginner’s Guide to Deliberate Practice
Learn Faster with a Feedback Loop: One of the best ways of learning fast and mastering any skill you want is to use a little-known technique called a Feedback Loop — a process whereby a learner gathers information about their performance and leverages it to optimize the quality of their learning style or methods.
A Feedback Loop is made up of 3 stages:
- Practice/Apply – This is the stage where you put what you want to learn into action.
- Measure – This is the stage where you’re acquiring information about your performance. This is also the stage that learners typically ignore or do ineffectively.
- Learn – This is the stage where you analyze how well you performed, and make adjustments to improve and practice/apply again.
Feedback Loops can make a significant and positive difference to how you learn. It might be just what you need to turn your learning failures into successes!
If you need more information and inspiration then grab our The Secret Technique to Learning Anything Fast online workbook:
And after reading that, be sure to also check out our Learn Anything Fast Handbook. This handbook is a self-driven program for transforming your learning skills in a smart and efficient way.
More Resources to Help You Get Your Goals
Learning new things should be fun and rewarding. And as well as helping you expand your hobbies, it could also boost or even completely change your career.
For example, you might currently work in an office job, but fancy something more hands on. When you become a confident learner, you’ll be able to take – and pass – the courses you need to help you progress. Just image, you could retrain to be a mechanical engineer or a park ranger.
When you know how to learn fast and efficiently, a whole world of exciting opportunities will open up to you.
Want to learn more about learning? Including how to:
- Design and build your own learning system optimized for your needs
- Quickly master a new topic and ignore the noise by identifying key concepts
- Systematically internalize new skills and make them a part of you
Then check out our comprehensive selection of Lifehack courses, vlogs and articles below:
- Becoming Self-Taught (The How-To Guide)
- 30 Best Quotes to Inspire You To Never Stop Learning
- 5 Hacks to Speed up the Learning Process
- How to Learn a New Language: 6 Simple Hacks
- How to Use Spaced Repetition to Remember What You’ve Learned
- 8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More
- How to Memorize More and Faster Than Other People
- 12 Learning Goals For Personal Growth And Self Development
- The 7 Types of Learners: What Kind of Learner Am I?
- How to Cultivate Continuous Learning to Stay Competitive
- 11 Brain Training Apps to Train Your Mind and Improve Memory
- What Is Speed Reading and How to Successfully Learn It