Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own. (Bruce Lee)
Fragments from imaginary dialogues
“Why do you read so much about learning?”
“Because I realized no one tells the whole story. No one.
Every book is a meta-source, a compilation of other sources, more or less integrated within one’s own experience.
In the process, I’m creating my own system of learning, and continually optimizing it, with the goal of maximizing learning efficiency. I call this system, Optimal Learning.
As a strategy, I’m focusing on principles. I want to identify the fundamental principles of learning.”
“What principles have you identified so far?”
“One of the most important principles, I know form Eben Pagan:
Learning = Behavior Change
I thought it would be fun to identify those principles that can be expressed with the same structure:
Learning = x
These are the ones I’ve come up with so far:
Learning = Creating
Learning = Transfer
I view learning as a creative process, and a means of practicing creativity and imagination. I call this principle, Creative Learning.
The most valuable knowledge is that which is most transferable, which has the widest creative application in one’s life.
Learning = Reaching
Learning is deeper and more durable when it’s effortful, when you’re stretching yourself beyond the boundaries of your comfort zone. I call this principle, Challenge.
Learning = Feedback + Reflection
Learning is a cyclical process. You do something, filter the useful feedback from the useless, the signal from the noise, reflect on it, and repeat. I call this principle, Learning Cycles, or Iterative Learning.
Learning = Understanding
Learning = Questioning
Learning = Teaching
Knowledge is only built upon a foundation of understanding.
The best way to gain understanding and engage with what you’re learning is by asking questions.
The best way to gain feedback on the quality of your understanding is by teaching it to someone who knows nothing about it.
Learning = Humility
To learn is to practice Humility. You don’t know what you don’t know. And the more you learn, the more you discover how little you know. Humility puts you in a state of receptivity.
All learning is state dependent. I call this the principle of Optimal State. I consider Humility an important element of the optimal state for learning.”