The Thursday Thesis - 3/11/2016
“If it’s worth doing, it’s going to be hard to do”.
You’ve heard it for most of your life, the same as I have.
The only problem with it is this: it isn’t true.
Regardless of whether it’s a lie or a mistake, it adds a moral judgement to the whole process of learning and working. Just letting that phrase live in your mind poisons you by its insistence that learning easily and quickly is wrong, and that work must necessarily be hard or unpleasant.
Doesn’t that strike you as utterly messed-up?
You see, doing things the hard way is neither more nor less moral than doing things easily: if your outcome is the same in either case, whether it’s hard or easy to do is irrelevant.
Work is morally neutral, unless you choose to adopt the moral attributions of control-freaks and oppressors.
If taking the arduous, long road to your destination enthrals you, then go ahead and take that road.
But – in life - you choose the destination, and you get to choose the route. So, if your aim is to learn, build or create something that matters to you, or master a skill quickly, surely the route should be as easy, and as fast as possible?
The best way to learn anything, quickly and easily, is to spend time with someone who already has the skill-set you want to have: a master of the game you want to play. By modelling and reproducing the mindset and behaviour they already have, you will become just like them, and you’ll produce the same results they produce.
Best of all – make it fun, because there is no inherent superiority in struggle or hard labour, though we are often invited to attribute a special quality to such things.
Would anyone but a charlatan or a fool insist that we or our children struggle to learn, to grow and to flourish?
Why don’t we teach children how to learn, instead of what to learn and telling them how hard it will be?
So, ask yourself what skill would you like to learn - how quickly and easily would you like to master that skill, and to enjoy the benefits of having it?
And how much fun would it be, learning that skill?
Yes, Fun! Remember that stuff?
If there’s one tip that beats them all for accelerated learning, it is to have fun!
If you’re having fun, your mind will be in “Receive Mode”, and you’ll want to do it again and again. Wouldn’t you want to come back for more if learning was a game that you loved to play?
Take a moment, right now, and have fun imagining your mind in a playground of new ideas, opening-up mysteries and exploring the unknown...
That’s what learning really is – and doesn’t that sound like a ton of fun?
© Neil Cowmeadow 2016
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