In life, you need to always look for new skills that you can master to increase your productivity as well as your chances of getting hired. If you run a business, you need to keep tabs on the trends and ever changing market forces to ensure that your businesses continues to stay afloat and dominates the niche.
One of the facts that you need to keep in mind when you are trying to learn something new is that you do not have to be a genius. In addition, learning is actually a skill that can develop over time and profit fully from it if your committed and determined.
Today, we look at 9 proven hacks on how to master new skills in half the time. Most of these hacks are pretty simple and you can start working on them today.
1. Start Simple
There is a learning curve to everything and so you need to be patient and enjoy the learning process. Starting off with the complicated and difficult things will get you in the wrong mindset and hinder you from getting to your desired destination. Experts recommend start off with the simplest tasks before progressing to the hard tasks.
The simple tasks will give you insights as well as ideas that you can use to handle the difficult tasks. For example, if you want to learn how to play a piano, start will the simple melodies and chord progressions.
2. Spend Time Wisely
Time is one of the most important resources that you will need as you continue to learn the new skill. Therefore, it is of paramount importance to manage and spend it wisely to get the expected results. One of the best ways of doing this is by dividing the topics into small chunks or learnable bits that you can handle. In fact tutors are advised to make sure that they teach in small bits instead of giving students a huge bunch of information at a go. You too can benefit from this learning strategy if you apply it correctly. Use your own judgment to know how to divide the topics. For example, you can commit to reading two paragraphs of a philosophy book per day depending on your schedule.
3. Discuss the Information Acquired with Someone
A research that was done at Montreal University reading and verbalizing helps the brain to process and store data faster. In this study, students were required to read words that were displayed on a screen. Some decided to read them silently while other verbalized them. At the end of the study, professors realized that students who read and verbalized the words were able to remember the words better than their counterparts.
It does not matter the kind of skill that you are trying to master, reading and discussing the new information that you acquire with someone will help you understand the concepts better and be able to apply them in real life more effectively.
4.Nurture a Habit of Writing Down Points
Numerous studies have proven that reading and writing down the main points on a piece of paper helps students to understand the concepts taught in class better. The commitment of physically taking out a pen and a notepad to write the points will trigger your brand to store and decipher the information better than just reading silently.
A research done in Columbia University showed that when we rely on computers and mobile devices to remember things, our brains capability to store information weaken as there is no commitment to the learning process.
5. Take Regular Breaks
It does not matter your intelligence quotient or the learning skills that you amassed in school, you need to give your brain time to rejuvenate and process the data. It has been proven that taking regular useful breaks is very effective in increase employees productivity and efficiency. Based on this fact, you should not shy away from walking out of the office for five minutes to enjoy a breeze on the balcony. Power naps especially after lunch are also effective in boosting energy levels as well as enhancing concentration.
6. Repeat Tasks But be Moderate
I’m sure that you have in the past been advised that spending more time doing something increases your chances of mastering it. I have some bad news for you – this does not always work and so you are not guaranteed positive results when you spend more time on an activity. According to a study that was done at Princeton University, such a deliberate practice of repeating tasks multiple times or spending too much time on it has a likelihood of 1-26% to deliver positive results, but this is dependent on the activity or skill that you want to acquire.
The point is, there are certain things that you will get better at when you dwell on them more, while others demand that you commit yourself to them, roll up your sleeves and get down to work. Ultimately, it is up to you to determine what you need to do to master the skills that you yearn.
7. Be Grateful and Find Value in Your Daily Life
The first thing that you need to know is that finding the use or relevance of something that you rarely use or apply in your daily life is incredibly difficult. For example, how many times have you heard students ask why they need to take complex courses such as calculus or statistics in school? Even though the concepts taught in statistics and calculus lessons may not be practically applicable at the supermarket or in your business, soon you will learn how they will fit into the bigger picture.
Concisely, throughout the learning process, your goal should be to find fascination in every subject or concept that you come across in the learning curve and appreciate the impact it could have on your life later in life. If you are taking an advanced statistics course, the concepts will help you manage your business better by enabling you to make sound financial decisions.
8.Mediate and Visualize It
Most people are of the idea that meditation is somehow related to pseudoscience. We beg to defer – meditation has actually being proven to be one of the best mental exercises that you can do to improve your understand of a particular concept be in business, corporate world, or in your social life.
A recent study that was presented at MIT shows that the participants who spent time per day meditating on what they learning during the 8 weeks training courses were able to control alpha rhythms better than their counterparts. This result showed that meditation helps to facilitate smooth flow of information in the brain. It also helps to limit distractions that could compromise the learning process.
Based on these facts, you should not shy away from spending a few hours per day meditating and visualizing the things that you been learning throughout the day. This simple hack when done on a daily basis and without fail will boost your concentration as well as change your mindset and perception towards tasks that you previous thought were difficult to achieve.
9.Surround Yourself with the Right People
The people that you spend most of your time with have a direct impact on the success that you will achieve overtime. The wrong people will demoralize and discourage you from moving to the next tier of success. On the other hand, people who understand the goals that you are trying to achieve and want you to succeed will also motivate you to keep on keeping on as well as give you tips that you can apply in the learning process to better understand and master the skills. Social media is one of the best places to connect and interact with this kind of people as most platforms such as Facebook allow people who have the same goals and objectives to form groups where they can freely interact and share ideas.
Commit yourself to learning new skills every month to continue developing your skills and expertise in various fields. Definitely, you will make some mistakes and encounter challenges along the way. Do not let such obstacles discourage you, instead, view them as stepping stones that will propel you to success. More importantly, you should not let success get into your head as that could lower your motivation to learn new skills.