Learn what you want in an intelligent way
Have you ever heard the phrase, “work smarter, not harder”? Most of us have heard it but don’t know how to apply it to our lives. Today, I will teach you a technique that has changed how I learn new skills. You will become a smarter learner if you apply it to your life.
I recently started learning Turkish. I spend between 5-10 minutes a day learning new phrases and vocabulary. At the dinner table or in bed at the end of the day, I tell my wife about the words I learned that day. Not because my wife is particularly interested in Turkish, but because I want to see if I remember the words I practiced. This process of learning by teaching is called the Feynman Technique.
How can you apply this technique to your learning?
First, choose a topic you want to learn. I’m currently working on my communication skills. I’ve looked for videos and articles online from top experts.
Secondly, I summarize the main ideas and explain them to my wife. If my wife doesn’t understand my explanation, I go back to the material to see how I can simplify it further.
After making the necessary changes, I explain it to her again. She asks me questions, and if I can answer her clearly, I smile because I’m one step closer to mastering this skill.
Why is this method so effective?
There’s a difference between understanding something and knowing the name of something. It’s possible to memorize a list of communication techniques and not know how they work in real life. When I summarize it and explain it to my wife, I get immediate feedback about whether I know the material or not. When she asks me questions, I realize whether I understood the concepts or if I only memorized the words on the page.
If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.Albert Einstein
The next time you meet someone who speaks in a complicated and technical way, ask them to simplify the material. That will show you if they know what they’re talking about or just pretending to know.
Are you ready to be a smart learner? Try the Feynman Technique with me. Contact me for more details.
Repeating anything withut change is a waste of time. 🙂
That’s a very good point. There’s a phrase that goes, “the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results.”