Determined to Learn

“If you are not willing to learn, no one can help you. If you are determined to learn, no one can stop you.”

Zig Ziglar


     You are so lucky. You work at a great job for a great company. On top of that you work with a great group of employees. Together your team gets a lot done. When you need some help you know where to go and usually you get that the help you need. If you are lucky there’s a Lois Lane working in your office. She’s nicknamed Lois Lane because she’s the team’s Superwoman. If there’s a problem she just always seems to be able to solve it. Yet some of you become too reliable on Lois and it actually hurts you. It hurts you because on many occasions Lois solves your problem but you don’t learn anything. You actually don’t see the need to learn since you know Lois can solve it. It’s just too easy to go and ask her. You end up in the same place 2 years from now and Lois moves on. That is because Lois was determined to learn and that’s why she always had the answers. You didn’t have the answers because you weren’t willing to learn and now there’s no one to help you. The reason Lois is gone is because of her learning no one could stop her.

    Does this story sound familiar? Is there that one person or few persons who always seem to be asking for help? Do not misinterpret that question as saying asking for help is bad. Yet the timing of when you ask for help is a key to your success. You have the option of asking for help as soon as you run into your first stumbling block. You also have the option of never asking for help no matter the circumstance and wasting hours or days of effort when someone could have solved your problem in minutes. Yet you should strive to find the happy medium. You should strive to learn as much as you can before asking for help. The more you learn the more powerful you become. That power is what makes you unstoppable. This is not only true for your occupation but it is true for all aspects of your life. The more you learn the more powerful you become.

     The term unwilling is rather harsh and I’m sure many of you don’t believe it fits your approach to learning. To better make the point let’s just say it’s easier to have someone else take care of something for you than for you to learn to do it yourself. It’s also easier to decide not to read a book and watch TV instead. It’s especially easier if you don’t see an immediate value in reading the content in the book. You will read a book when you know it is required pre-reading for a class you are taking at work. You will read a book when you have heard from so many people how good it is and you want to find out for yourself because of FOMO (fear of missing out). Yet to read a book just because the topic is interesting or relevant to your life is not that attractive. Reading a book takes work and you have enough work from 9-5.
The undying drive for ease and less work is hurting you in the end. Every great thing you have in your life has taken work. You actually don’t mind working as long as you know what you are working for. That’s where learning comes into the picture. The more you learn the better your opportunity to know the right things to work on. The more knowledge you have the better prepared you are for success. You should strive to increase your knowledge every day. If you were told to read these ten books and learn these 10 procedures for $1 million dollars you would do it in a heartbeat. Don’t wait to be told. Your million dollars is waiting on you but you are going to have to work to get it.

Here are some great examples of how to increase your learning:

  • The next time you are faced with a problem that you don’t know how to solve, take the time to try. Get some failures under your belt then ask for help. When you ask for help be prepared to explained the steps you took to try and solve the problem before engaging with someone to help. This will allow the person helping you to teach you where you went wrong so you can learn from your mistakes.
  • Read, read and read some more. If reading is very difficult for you give audio books a try. Listening to an audio book is far more beneficial than listening to your favorite radio station.
  • Attend a webinar on a topic you have interest in. Put it on your calendar and turn off your phone so you can give it your full attention.
  • Learn the art of asking questions. The next time you are at lunch, a bar or the water cooler ask questions that prompt your guest to teach you something about themselves or the topic of conversation.
  • Invest in a personal development class either with time, money or both.

     When you search for ease and avoidance of work, you do yourself a huge disservice. You end up not having all the tools and knowledge necessary to get the success you desire. No one can help you get there either. You can only help yourself. By deciding to help yourself and learn as much as humanly possibly you set yourself up for any success you desire. In that position no one can stop you. You have a choice of which path to take. You have been making that choice for years. What is great is you get to make that choice every minute, every hour, every day. What will you choose? Will you avoid learning to take the easy route or will you decide to ferociously learn as much as humanly possible? Good luck with your choice and enjoy all the learning that is coming your way. It will be followed by much success. As always I wish you the best and enjoy the journey.

With gratitude,

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