Necessity Is the Ultimate Teacher

Remember that thing you wanted to learn? You know what I mean. That thing that keeps on nagging in the back of your head. That thing that comes to mind now and then and reminds you that there are so many things that you could explore. You know it would be interesting and, almost certainly, fun to learn it. But somehow, you never started.

Learning to draw. Learning to sing. Learning to write. Learning to debate. Learning to speak in public. Learning to say no. Learning to design. Learning to code. Learning to fly.

There are so many opportunities to learn out there. Yet most of the time, we seem to learn only the things that are really necessary at this very moment. Suddenly, learning something becomes essential for survival. When there are no excuses and no alternatives, learning something and staying at it is suddenly much easier.

So if you want to learn something, create necessity. Start a small project that presents you with real challenges and problems to solve. Sign up for a course, book a workshop, set yourself a deadline. Find something that excites your curiosity and is endlessly interesting but also lets you work hands-on and solve real problems as you go. You’ll discover that it is now much easier to overcome the first hurdle of learning something: Getting started. And you’ll discover that only by having to solve real problems, you’ll go deep and learn by experience – which is where true learning happens.

Necessity is the ultimate teacher.

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This is the 34th post of my 100 days of writing series. You can find a list of all posts here.

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