Being part of a community based on higher education, Southeast students, faculty, and staff should especially be familiar with the need to practice lifelong learning. To be classified as a lifelong learner, one must take an active role in continually learning and increasing knowledge, formally or informally. While taking the time to increase your knowledge may require scheduling and possibly developing a routine, benefits include both personal and professional growth.
Here is a top 10 list of why you should learn something new every day and how to gain or use this acquired knowledge:
1. Be an informed citizen. Keep yourself up-to-date on the latest events. Consider having a news app on your mobile devices for easy access to the latest news.
2. Improve your engagement and communication with others. Learning new things can improve your conversation with others, whether in person or via social media. This can then open the discussion for further topics.
3. Increase or improve your overall memory. An active brain will improve your overall memory. The more you “exercise” your brain, the farther your brain will be able to “run.” This concept takes into consideration that the more knowledge you obtain by personal exploration, the more you train your brain to store additional knowledge. It can also help delay diseases like Parkinson’s.
4. Gain power. As the saying goes, Knowledge is Power. The more you know, the more you will be able to do. Rather than buying a piece of art or paying someone to build your new deck, consider learning how to do it yourself and save money. Squareknot is just one place out of many where you can interact with others and watch guides to help you learn anything, as well as sharing guides of your own.
5. Keep abreast of technology advancements. Technology is forever changing, which can affect us in good ways, as well as bad. Don’t be left behind—subscribe to TechTalk or other technology blogs so you can be in the know.
6. Earn more money. Learning new soft or hard skills can advance your career and boost your resume when wanting to “climb the ladder of success.”
7. Increase happiness. New stimuli provides a rush of dopamine, or the feel-good hormone. Learning doesn’t have to be considered work; learning can occur in a fun way. There are several cognitive games that provide enjoyment while challenging your brain. Lumosity and GeoGuessr are two online game-based sites you may be interested in trying.
8. Broaden your viewpoints. Expand your knowledge by listening to podcasts or watching a TED talk to learn can introduce new information that supports or challenges your viewpoint.
9. Improve your overall lifestyle. Become more knowledgeable about your physical and mental health. Visit Daily Infographic to increase your knowledge of vaccines, breaking bad habits, foods that build muscle, as well as information that can positively impact your overall health and lifespan. These online infographics can bring you quick information through fun images that are more intriguing to read. Visual learning both decreases comprehension time and allows for the information to linger longer in your memory.
10. Increase your confidence. Self-confidence levels can have a positive or negative impact on your social interactions, career, accomplishments, and even your attitude.
“The lifelong practice of learning is what makes us humans and our lives worthwhile” (Wax 2018). From birth we are taught that learning new things is essential for gaining status and increasing opportunities throughout life. If that is true, why would we stop learning after school is over? We are not meant to only learn new things every day while in a learning environment; we are wired to be lifelong learners.
Now that lifelong learning has become reinforced, visit the following links to identify ways you can learn something new every day.
- How to Learn Something New Every Day in 15 Minutes or Less
- 40 Best Places to Learn Something New Every Day
- Learn Something New Every Day
Author: Kendra Benak, IT Tech Assistant