“How did you know that?” – a question that I get a lot. I always respond with the same, (quite generic), Game of Thrones quote with a shrug, “I drink and I know things, that’s what I do.” Much like one of my all-time favorite fictional characters, Tyrion Lannister, I enjoy reading – a lot. I also enjoy surprising people with the amount of random information I’ve acquired over the years. Is some of it pretty useless when it comes to daily application? Absolutely. Is it still fun to be able to rattle off facts? Heck yes.
I’ve talked to a lot of others who always seem to be learning new skills, picking up new cool facts, and generally just expanding their knowledge base on a continuous basis. More goes into it than simply reading, (although, that is a huge part of it.)
After a lot of one of my favorite activities, researching, (which is a hell of a lot more complicated than simply using Google and watching a couple of YouTube videos), I put together this list. If you are a person who seeks to continually learn – these habits will help make the process of constantly learning not only smoother, but also a lot of fun! Here are 6 habits of people who are constantly learning:
1. They Read – A LOT
Okay, so this is pretty obvious but oh, so very powerful. People who constantly learn read daily, they read diversely and they don’t limit themselves.
There are so many materials available out there to read and honestly, you don’t have to pay a lot of money to get your hands on much of it. There are countless books, studies and academic research available online.
Reading is powerful. Words are powerful. There is always something to be learned from simply reading something new.
2. They Look for New Learning Opportunities
Experiences and interactions with others can also be a great chance to learn something new. Lifelong learners crave these opportunities. They seek them out.
For example, speaking to a person of a culture you know little about is a huge learning opportunity. Going somewhere you’ve never been is another chance to learn something new.
Any opportunity that arises where something new can be learned is not neglected by lifelong learners, even if sometimes that new opportunity is out of their comfort zone.
3. They’re Always Challenging Themselves
Learning, especially lifelong learning, is a lot like participating in an obstacle course. There are hurdles. You’re going to encounter the unexpected. However, that challenge is part of the journey.
Those who are constantly learning love taking on those challenges. They set them up for themselves.
For instance: “I want to achieve X by this date. I have to complete Y and Z before that can happen.” They then challenge themselves to get it done. This can be done when it comes to just about any type of learning, even though additional variables may need to be considered.
Lifelong learners will set goals and challenge themselves to complete those goals.
4. They aren’t Held Back by the Opinions of Others
There’s always going to be those people who are relatively loud when it comes to their opinions. In my experience, most of those people are just miserable. If you tell somebody that you’re embarking on a new challenge, a new learning experience, and so on and their opinion towards that has some type of negative connotation – who cares? (Also, remember to take a good look at the type of person these opinions are coming from.)
One generally bad opinion I’ve heard: “Isn’t it too late to start something like that?”
Age should NEVER limit you from learning something new. Frankly, it’s a lame excuse. Ignore the opinions of those who favor ‘running in place.’ Lifelong learners don’t regard those types of limiting opinions.
5. They have Positive Attitudes
Mindset, as I always say, (and vibes), is everything. If you’re constantly negative, you’re never going to get anywhere when it comes to learning.
Those who are constantly learning know that looking at things positively rather than negatively is the way to go.
Instead of saying, “How would I ever be able to accomplish that”, say, “How CAN I accomplish that.”
Constant learners see a challenge as a chance to better themselves, not a setback.
6. They Take Pride in Their Progress
Even those small stepping stones that may not seem like a big deal to the average bear is a huge deal for consistent learners. Its progress and progress is a huge part of any learning experience.
Lifelong learners know when they’ve made progress and take pride in it. They celebrate it and usually surround themselves with others who do the same.
Constant Learners Understand that it’s a Lifelong Process.
Becoming a constant learner has a ton of benefits. You’ll know more. You’ll be more confident. And, you’ll always be a step ahead of those who don’t make learning a priority in their life.
Some Other Habits of Lifelong Learners to Consider:
- They aren’t afraid to step out of their comfort zone.
- They take risks.
- They avoid negative people.
- They befriend other lifelong learners.
- They adapt well to change.
- They never relent.
- They take courses.
- They take care of themselves.