Ever wonder how some people seem to absorb new information like a sponge? Turns out, there’s a lot more that goes into their process than just hearing it once and picking up the new skill.
Anyone can improve their learning speed and efficiency with a few tips. Here are the top 5 habits of quick learners that you can steal to help in your next endeavor.
1. Learning efficiently.
There are many experts in this world. If you’re interested in learning something quickly, don’t try to reinvent the wheel. Tap into the brains of the people who have already done the legwork to explore and absorb information on the particular subject.
A good example of this is learning how to cook your grandma’s favorite dish. She’s cooked for years. She knows the recipe and knows the exact process you must take to make it extraordinary. To learn how to cook this, you don’t experiment by tossing together the various ingredients haphazardly, do you? No. It’s far more efficient to spend some time with your grandma in the kitchen to learn her secret to the perfect food.
2. Follow the K.I.S.S. rule.
Overcomplicating the learning process will only make it longer and more daunting. Instead, follow the K.I.S.S. rule: Keep It Simple Stupid. Break down each step and simplify it to an almost ridiculous level.
Learning something at its most basic level shortens the learning curve and makes it easier to digest. The simpler it is, the faster you’ll absorb the new information.
3. Form new habits.
When you’re learning something new, you must form new habits. Scheduling practice into your daily routine (at least initially) will give you the chance to repeat, repeat, repeat until you master the new subject.
It might not be the most fun part about learning, but fast learners don’t waiver in their practice. Force yourself to dig into the subject and practice every day for 30 days. By then, you will have created a habit of practicing your new skill and will have made impressive advancements.
4. Let the critics speak.
In the beginning, you’re going to be bad. You’re not going to have the skill level you ultimately want. That’s okay.
Let the critics speak their mind and offer pieces of advice. You might learn a better way of performing your new skill that will help you learn faster. But be cautious with who you listen to. If something isn’t working well for you or just doesn’t feel quite right, stick to your preferred method.
5. Don’t quit.
It’s inevitable. You’ll run into a million excuses throughout the day to quit. You’ll run out of time, money, or interest and want to stop learning. Don’t quit! You’ll undo everything you worked hard for, and ultimately, you’ll regret giving up.
Whether you or a new employee is learning something new, keeping these habits in mind will help you learn faster.
Jon Forknell is the Vice President and General Manager of Atlas Business Solutions, Inc., a software marketing company specializing in employee scheduling software, including ScheduleBase employee scheduling software, and other business software solutions. In the past, Jon has been recognized by the U.S. Small Business Administration as a SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year. Atlas Business Solutions was named as one of Software Magazine’s Top 500 Software Companies in 2004 through 2007 and again in 2010, 2013 and 2014.