I am a learner. If I am not learning everyday, life is boring and then I waste away watching the Hallmark Channel and The Bachelor. I get excited when I learn something new and everyday I find myself proclaiming out loud “I learned something new today”! I strongly believe that if we are not learning we are not growing; if we are not growing we are stagnant; if we are stagnant we are dying.
I’ve heard at many conferences that “learners are earners” and I really believe that’s true. Successful people learn everyday, without exception, even when on vacation or taking a time out. When we are excited to learn, that excitement vibe attracts in others of a similar vibe, especially if it relates to our business, and that’s where the magic happens.
I typically have 5 or more books stacked up to read (sometimes I’m reading a few at the same time); books to help me be better and to help my business be better. I can’t remember the last time I was NOT in some training program. I also learn when I teach others, which is why I have sometime to teach about every week!
But here’s the thing that I’ve noticed … it is easy to be a perpetual student, to intake as much knowledge as you can on a particular topic, but then use the I’m busy learning excuse to not take action. Here’s a helpful hint: you will/should never stop learning!
Learning without action is just filling your brain, spending your money, and what does that really get you? There’s no improvement in that.
When we learn something, we must implement that knowledge. When we implement, we may love what that knowledge does (helps us grow our business, helps us to find a new interest, helps us to be better in work/relationships/health/money), or we may find out that it was not a right fit and we can try another technique or tweak it to work for us. But if we fail to implement, we may keep learning more about the same topic and not realize that it’s not the right fit. Then we’re just energetically stuck and we wonder why our life stays the same.
When we fail to implement what we’ve learned, we stay in the same place we were before. Energetically we send out the message that we want to keep learning … learning … learning … learning, so we keep finding learning opportunities. We learn ourselves into infinity but have nothing to show for it.
So why do we do that? I have dwelled on this and here’s my thoughts:
- We fail to implement because we are afraid of trying and failing.
- We fail to implement because the knowledge may be overwhelming and we don’t know how to break it down into steps to implement.
- We fail to implement because it could take us out of our comfort zone and put us in a new unfamiliar energy.
- We fail to implement to avoid addressing and resolving a stress or situation in our life.
So how do we find that sweet spot between daily learning and getting that learning into practice? Here’s what I do (and it is a work in progress everyday to make sure that I don’t fall into the perpetual learner mode):
- As you are reading a book or in a training program, start making a list of small easy steps that you can immediately implement. Don’t wait until the end to start; start with a small step the next day, and then the next day, and so on. If you wait until the end, your list looks overwhelming and it is easy to stuff the list in a drawer and forget about it.
- If you self-identify as a perpetual learner who does not implement, make a mindful decision that you will not move on to the next book/class/webinar/training/program until you implement at least one technique from what you just learned. This gets the ball rolling.
- Put your tasks in your calendar and treat it like it’s an appointment with your boss.
- Post written affirmations everywhere so that you see them throughout the day. Good ones could be: “Today I complete one task from (list book/class/program) and I’m excited to do it.”
- If you really want to tough-love yourself (I do this often), deny yourself a daily activity until you complete your task. For example, no lunch/no Facebook/no TV until you complete one step. It may be tough love, but it works!
- Tools to help you motivate and take those small steps, these work for me:
- Motivation oil, Citrus oils (like Lemon, Orange, Tangerine, Lime)
- Crystals: Carnelian, Pyrite, Red Jasper, Tiger’s Eye (good root and sacral chakra get-your-keester-moving stones)
If you identify as a learner and not an implementer, you have already taken a huge step forward in your energy. And that’s the energy that we want … forward moving. Remember, take one baby step to implement what you’ve learned, and do it again the next day, and the next and so on. Do not stop and just keep moving forward. But above all, keep learning!
About Allie Phillips: