Monday, February 6, 2023

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Taking a Measured Approach to Skill Acquisition

One of life’s truest pleasures is learning new things. Whether major or minor, improving our knowledge and skill bases is a significant part of how we grow, but it’s rarely a simple task.

As adults, we often learn on our own time, with professional classes rarely having the space to cater to our individual learning styles. There are some common problems we see arise when taking this route, but these can be addressed by taking a more measured approach.

Learning isn’t Easy

When we learn a new skill, be it mental or physical, we do so because we understand what the result implies.

From being able to understand and talk in a new language to being able to simply walk up a couple of flights of stairs without losing breath, we have a target, and we’re eager to meet it.

However, being over-eager can be problematic, pushing us to make mistakes that will harm the likelihood of success.

Most often, problems come from over-commitment. We try to spend hours a day studying, or assume we can dedicate ourselves to the gym regularly and without excuse. By setting our sights too high, we open ourselves up to fail in what we thought we needed.

Burnout is common, again both on the mental and physical front. We can try to push through burnout, but this can make it even worse, turning what used to be an exciting pursuit into one we dread.

Thus begins a pattern of avoidance, until we start to wonder why started in the first place. If all of this sounds familiar, you wouldn’t be the first one to travel this road.

Setting Expectations and Standards

The real first step to learning a new skill is to understand that progress isn’t always linear. Life isn’t so simple as to afford everything we need, so we need to accept that we’ll see hurdles along the way. As long as you expect these, and learn whenever possible, setbacks can act as opportunities to learn.

Take running as an example. A common mistake we see runners commit at first is believing all parts of their body exist at the same level of fitness and strength. As discussed at Podium Runner, the body isn’t that simple.

Some people can have the cardio, but their hips will let them down. Others will need to work on all parts, but have different parts strengthened at different rates.

Each injury will be disheartening, but understanding the why of each setback also increases any further chances of eventual success, if you pay attention.

This exercise idea also ties into the implementation of skills in that you should strive to use them in a way that targets fun. Take someone learning a language, for example.

If you already enjoy a hobby like online casinos, practicing them on the titles of a website like Vegas Slots Online could be a natural fit. Games like Popeye and White Orchid aren’t too complicated, and they’d mesh with what a slot enthusiast would already enjoy, and you can play them for free.

Factor in availability on mobiles, and they also add flexible access to the equation that could further aid involvement.

As for how much effort should be put into training, this is also an element that will vary depending on your personal life and mental load, but even people with a lot of free time should be wary of overextending.

Even if you can avoid burnout in your study and practice, there is a limit on how much a person can learn and improve in a day.

Instead of overextending when you hit a plateau, try something new like we’ve talked about at Yeye Life before. Have creative conversations, change your scenery, and otherwise keep your mind engaged in other ways. Most of all, remember to sleep well.

Learning

Nothing worth having comes easily. This might seem trite, but it’s also a fundamental truth when it comes to the acquisition of new skills.

Understand the best way to engage, know that failure is an unavoidable part of the process, and remember to allow ample time for lessons to consolidate.

Remember, learning is a marathon, not a sprint. You don’t need to take huge strides; you just need to keep heading in the right direction.

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