What if there is a way to learn faster and shortcut your learning curve to success? Don’t you think you will become superhuman? Become unstoppable?
We all know learning is important, but most of us don’t want to learn because learning can be difficult and painful.
First, you have to be open and throw away the things that you think you know but are not helping you in life.
Second, it takes conscious effort to build your learning muscle.
Just like building your physical body. You need to work hard and feel the pain in order for your muscle to grow.
The same can happen to your brain.
You must constantly stretch it and challenge it to accept new things and absorb everything like a sponge.
Success requires learning and you can make the process faster
If you want to achieve success in life, there is no way you can stay stagnant and be at where you are right now.
Your knowledge, or what you now know get you exactly where you are right now in life.
And that means, if you want to get to higher ground, you need to change your mindset and the way you think.
You are where you are right now because of what you know.
And if you think you already “know it all”, you will be stuck where you are.
Change can only happen when you become better, become someone else, and think from a different perspective.
Therefore, if you want to achieve greater success in life, start by making a change in your mindset – the way you think.
When your thinking change, things will change.
And we know that we can initiate change by learning something new.
The problem is that we don’t have so much time. We only have 24 hours a day and we spend a large chunk of the time for sleeping and working.
So, how can we learn faster and shortcut the learning curve?
Here are a few good tips…
1. Measure and evaluate your progress
First, measure and evaluate your progress. There is no way you can tell if you are moving forward or backward without measuring your progress.
Think about it, your goal is to get better at a skill, right?
How can you know if you are improving or getting better if you don’t measure your progress?
The legendary management consultant, Peter Drucker once said, “You can’t manage what you don’t measure.”
Yes, without measuring your progress or know where you are, you can never improve it.
Here are a couple of suggestions for what you can do to measure your progress. Each day or each week or each month, write down what you have learned.
Get a journal and record down the things that are working for you and also write down what are the things that you have done wrong.
You also want to record down where you can improve. Do this every day or week or month, and then review your progress on a regular basis.
Schedule your calendar and make time to do this. It can take about 15 to 30 minutes, but the result will be amazing.
This activity helps you become more effective and at the same time, it helps you understand yourself better too.
2. Follow the best approach
Yes, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel.
When it comes to achieving success especially in business, we all want to do something unique that has never been done before.
We want to incubate an idea that no one has thought about before.
And let’s be honest, an idea that nobody has thought about before usually will not work.
You have to understand that it is not about reinventing the wheel, it is about improving the wheel.
You don’t have to start from scratch and find an idea that no one has thought about before, but rather, you need to start with an idea to improve the existing method of doing.
No matter what you want to learn, whether it is investing, starting an internet business, building a blog, or learning how to play the guitar, you don’t have to try to do it yourself and find your own way there.
You just need to follow the best approach or practices.
At least, in the beginning, you must force yourself to master the basics.
Think about making money from a blog. Most people want to sell something from their blogs or they want to earn advertising income.
The problem is that if you have no role models to follow, it will be extremely difficult for you, especially in the beginning.
You must find out who are the best bloggers or the top talent in your industry, and then model them and do what they do.
Nobody can become a great blogger or writer right from the start.
We all learn from other successful people and we are inspired by their work.
Thus, don’t reinvent the wheel and try to find your way there. Learn from the top leaders in your industry and master the basics first.
Identify the best players in your industry and model their success. Make them your role model and follow their work and what they do on social media.
If they published books, read their books. If they give talks or seminars, attend them.
In the beginning, you want to master the basics and learn from the best. At this point, you don’t want to start from scratch or even try to figure ways on your own.
How do you hike to the top of the mountain? You follow the trail.
Once you have mastered the basics, only then you start to be creative and improve the methods or do something unique.
This is how you can learn faster and shortcut your learning curve.
3. Learn from feedback
Another important tip is to learn from your feedback.
I know, we all hate feedback. We don’t like people tell us what we do isn’t effective or what we do is simply wrong.
But learning from feedback is the fastest way we can grow.
It is normal that we don’t like people to tell us what we do is incorrect, but it is also a very important message telling us where we should improve.
Imagine you play the guitar in front of an expert, and he’s telling you where you need to improve.
Or if you are a blogger, what if you send your best post to an expert in your industry and have him or her tell you about the quality of your article?
Don’t you think you can improve significantly if you take in the feedback and advice from experts?
Consider the source of the feedback
I know getting feedback is important, but you must also consider the source.
You don’t want to take in any feedback from anyone.
For example, if you want to invest in the stock market, do you want to take in advice from people who have never invested in stocks before?
No. You definitely don’t want to do that.
Hence, consider the source of the feedback.
You only want to learn from people who are qualified and who have the skills and knowledge.
Usually, people will never give you feedback or advice without your consent. What you want to do is be proactive.
Instead of waiting for experts to tell you where to improve, approach them and show them your work.
If you want to improve your guitar skills, then play it in front of a teacher and get his or her advice. Ask for their opinions and so you can improve to become better.
4. Put in more effort
So, how do you learn faster? Well, just put in more effort.
In other words, work harder. Spend more time on the subject matter and put in more of your effort.
In his ground-breaking book, Outliers: The Story of Success, best-selling author Malcolm Gladwell shared the idea of 10,000 Hours Rule.
The rule is that if you want to be a master at something, you must put in at least 10,000 hours of practice.
So, just work hard and put in more effort at where you want to improve.
- Want to be a successful blogger? Spend more time into blogging.
- Want to be a good investor? Put in the time and effort to learn and master the subject.
- Want to be good with cooking? Put in more time to cook more.
This is common sense. The more effort you put into something, the better you become.
The 10,000 Hour Rule is a piece of good advice, but it is not enough.
You need deliberate practice and focus.
I bet you have seen people who work hard and spend years into something, but they don’t seem to be able to achieve the master level.
Think about it, if you run an hour a day for years, does that make you an athlete who can qualify for Olympics? No.
The key is deliberate practice and focus.
You must purposefully practice your skills and when you work, work.
Don’t spend an hour working but, in that hour, you check Facebook 3 times and go and make coffee twice.
Make time to practice your skills and deliberately train yourself to improve yourself. Get a coach or a mentor if possible.
More importantly, when you work, work. When you play, play.
Focus is the key. It is not the time spend that counts, it is about how much focus you put into your work that will determine how good you are.
5. Get a mentor or a coach
So, you want to shortcut your learning curve and achieve success faster? Well then, get a coach or a mentor.
Sometimes, the best and fastest way to learn is to have someone to show you the way.
If you notice, all the extraordinary people don’t succeed alone. They have friends who remind them of what they want and they have coaches and mentors to guide them.
Why do you think that all professional athletes have coaches? Well, because a coach can show them where they need to improve the most.
Usually, we fail to see our weakness and strengths.
We need someone to point us our weakness so we can get rid of them, and we also need people to believe in our strengths, so we can shine where we are strongest.
Follow the experts and the best people in your niche. And when the time is right, get yourself a coach or a mentor to guide you to the next level.
Here’s an article from Jeff Goins you should read:
Make sure you get the right people as your mentor because if you don’t, things will be even worse than without having a mentor.
You want to make sure the mentorship works. Hence, find the right person and not just anyone.
6. Develop a learning mind
The easiest way to shortcut your learning curve is to learn. Make it a conscious effort to learn.
Read books, listen to podcasts, and watch informative videos.
The point is to develop an active routine for learning. You don’t want to leave things up to chances.
You can’t improve without consciously working on improving yourself. If you want to learn and improve, you need to go through the process.
And to do so, just develop the habit of learning.
Reading is the easiest way of learning. It may not be as effective, but it can be the easiest.
Want to know what books to read? Check out my recommendation here.
Or if you don’t like to read, just listen to podcasts. Some people prefer to listen than to read.
Plus, you don’t have to stop right there. YouTube is a great place for learning too. People are sharing their knowledge through publishing videos.
Just make sure you focus on learning and not mindlessly spending time searching unrelated videos that will distract and take away your time.
7. Challenge yourself and go through the pain
There’s a proverb that says, “Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors.”
Do you know that the best way to learn is through pain?
When something is easy, you don’t really learn a lot from it. Think about your life right now.
It was those difficult moments that gave you the most experience, right?
So, don’t get it wrong by thinking learning is easy. And fast doesn’t mean it is going to be easy.
Yes, you want to learn and improve your skills fast, but you must be willing to challenge yourself to do the hard things to learn the best.
Just like writing an article. When you first started, it is difficult.
You will find that putting up words and conveying your thoughts into articles is not easy.
And you may need to spend an hour to come up with a 500 words article.
But once you have mastered it, things become easy. You can write as you think and put your thoughts into words.
You just need to spend 30 minutes to write a 500 words article.
This is what I mean by challenging yourself.
From time to time, you must make things difficult for you.
Why? Because when things become easy, you will become comfortable with it and there will be no growth.
No pain, no gain.
You must embrace the pain and challenge yourself to do something that is out of your comfort zone.
Pain and feeling uncomfortable are signs of learning.
How easy it is to brush your teeth each morning? There is no pain brushing your teeth. It is easy to do. And so you don’t learn much from doing it.
Now imagine reading a book in a day or writing a 10,000 words article, how does that make you feel?
This is how you can grow yourself and become better at what you do – challenge yourself and do the difficult.
Regularly challenge yourself to do something difficult and uncomfortable.
Learn a new skill like cooking or playing the guitars. If you have never read books before, go and buy a book and read it today.
The key is to get yourself into doing something difficult that you have never done before.
This will build your mental strength and helps you be more resilient at what you do.
Read my previous article:
Here’s a motivational quote from Arnold Schwarzenegger to sum up this point:
“The last three or four reps is what makes the muscle grow. This area of pain divides the champion from someone else who is not a champion. That’s what most people lack, having the guts to go on and just say they’ll go through the pain no matter what happens.”
We all want to learn faster and shortcut our learning curve to success. And I have shared with you some amazing tips on how you can do so.
Everyone wants to achieve greatness in life, but most refuse to learn, improve themselves, and change their mind for the better.
Learning is not easy, but what you get from learning is pure joy.
Let me know if this article is helpful in achieving your goals and living your best life. Share your comments below.