Fuel to Your Curiosity
Why We Must Never Stop Learning.
5 min read
" An empty cup facing an ocean of knowledge, but all you can do is pour in the letters drop by drop."
Developing new interests has never been too easy for me. I don't seem to stick to one particular thing. I have taken numerous classes in different fields but could never really stick to one for more than a day. Yes, I was a lazy one indeed. I realized the cause was that all of these activities I was one way or the other, forced to do. They all were extrinsic. My parents would force me to go to this karate class or that badminton class but I could never stick to one, why? Because I had no interest in learning new things. Now, after a few years, I see kids around me who are the same. Most of the activities they do are extrinsic, that is, it's not based on "they're" will that they are performing that activity, either they are being forced by their parents or whatsoever. I realize that this "issue" if I say so myself is a concerning one. Childhood is the best time for all this! Later on, in life, you will have a million excuses and some of them will make sense! For eg., you might get away with saying you have loads to study or that you can't afford to "waste" time on learning something which I doubt will be useful.
Well, as for the use, lemme tell you, learning a new thing is never a waste. When you learn something you not only master that particular activity but master the various other aspects surrounding it. For eg, playing the guitar! I was never a fan of it. Maybe I was but I was driven by the results rather than the process ( more on that later in this blog ). My parents made me join around 2 courses and believe it or not, I stuck around for one of them for six months. ( I realize I contradicted the point in the first para by saying this but those six months felt equivalent to a day ) In each class, I would just sit and wonder how wonderful the view outside the window was. I had no idea what was going on during the class ( It was online btw.. ). My parents, after a while, obviously decided to question my guitar skills because it had been six months and I hadn't even learned a chord yet! And now, after a year or so, I know the major chords and can play up to 20 songs which I'm proud of.
I believe the trigger for this change was that in each class that I attended, even when I wasn't paying much attention, I was listening in the class. My headphones were still plugged in and that's what made the difference. Each day my body grew used to holding that guitar and picking. My tutor would once in a while ask me to play a song and I'd just string the basics but that is exactly what made me progress so far. And this triggered my urge for learning. I soon came to this realization that every single one of us can develop new interests! I see people my age playing video games, having no intention of even going out to just breathe in, forget learning.
I see my younger brother ( who FYI is 10 y/o right now ) playing video games, watching tv or YouTube, and wonder how this precious time could have been spent just doing something new. I wouldn't blame him much because I for one was also a victim of nonstop gaming ( this is just an example, it is fine to play at a limit because sooner or later you will come to an important realization, I give my word for it. ). This change influenced me to go out of my way to learn various new things. Now learning French and finally achieving the trilingual mark is a new interest I have developed. The same goes for coding, I always wanted to learn it but my failure of prioritizing it got the better of me. Now I finally have completed a course in HTML and am working on my first website.
I also realized that I was too fixated on the goal, like again in the case of playing the guitar, I am focused on the end goal i.e. learning the whole song. And this destroys the fun of learning, the fun of discovering each aspect of the song. You are unable to get into the flow state if you keep focusing on the end goal. Each minute will seem like an hour and so forth. Your focus will be diverted and you will be waiting for the moment of satisfaction when you finish learning. Now, this has 2 disadvantages. One is that if you keep an end goal and once you have achieved it, it becomes hard to go through what you have learned i.e. Revision. I, in no way, mean that you mustn't have a goal. Keep a goal, but rather, have a vision of the goal. For eg. Imagine yourself on a journey on the highway. If you keep focusing on reaching that imaginary nirvana then you will be missing out on the one that's right beside you!
I've always adored writing, and writing on this blog which I'm working on right now is another interest I've developed recently.
Learning is wonderful, There are a trillion things out there that we do not know of, even if we combine each other's knowledge, we still won't know enough. Now lemme tell you, it's never enough. Whatever you learn, you will never be able to learn everything. But the belief of learning everything that is out there is what keeps me going. I'm on this journey to do exactly that, going on and on, stopping in that corner shop on the highway for a tea every few days, and then resuming my journey back. All I wish for the one reading this is that, do not give up learning. It's endless, just give it a try once, and don't lose hope if you come across a pit because you will and then you will feel like giving up. If that happens, then just remind yourself of how this is just another test that I need to go through, and we all love those tests don't we?