Without a doubt the first step on the path of new learning is taking that first enormous step!
Making a conscious decision to embark on a new learning path, be it on your own or in a group, really is an enormous undertaking. But having made that decision, you have, almost without realizing it, made a commitment to yourself ….. a commitment that will enable you to tackle all that’s new in the vast world of cyberspace! Amidst the many challenges and discoveries, the path ahead is bound to be filled with hurdles. Don’t falter when the going gets rough. Meet the challenges thrown up at you head on! Know that making sense of new and different methods and tools is part and parcel of the learning process.
How do I know? Because I’ve been where you are now!
Be patient and kind to yourself – it will pay off!
Be determined and persistent in your approach – the rewards will be many!
When talking recently with a group of newbies, I shared with them the following thoughts ….. thoughts which I have found to be the secret to mastering new knowledge.
- I can …. I can …. I can …. The right attitude is all it takes! The more you learn the greater confidence you will have to continue learning.
- Jump in feet first: Take a risk. Know that the computer is not going to blow up if you try something new! Cast aside fears and trepidations that you may have long held. Explore the unknown with a conviction to mastery.
- Immersion: Seek out opportunities to be exposed to new methods and new ideologies. Surround yourself with other like-minded people. Like learning a new language, your chance of learning is maximized when you are immersed in it!
- Prioritise: Sort out what you really want to achieve and go for it! Set short and long term goals. Decide on the best and most achievable route to reach your end goal.
- Rome wasn’t built in a day: Know that you can’t learn everything all at once. Like building a house, the foundations must be laid first and then, brick by brick, the construction materializes.
- Patience: It takes time to absorb new methods and new skills and for these to be synthesized with the old. Assuming you will learn everything in a week, a month or a year is unrealistic. Accept that learning is a lifelong journey.
- Collaborate: Having others with whom to share promotes the joy of learning. Develop your PLN – your Personal Learning Network. Learning with others is fun! Your PLN is a safe and secure environment in which to learn. It is a place where you can freely question and learn from and with others.
- Learning by doing: Engage with what you are learning. Actively participate and involve yourself. Active learning is more beneficial than passive learning!
- Comparisons are dangerous: We all learn and achieve at a difference pace. Don’t compare where you’re at with others. Work at your own pace and value your own achievements!
- Time investment: It goes without saying that the more time invested in learning the greater will be the returns! Know that the road of learning is long. Dedicate time to exploring.
Start small – keep it simple.
Be prepared … learning never ends!