Recapture the Joy of Learning
by Rex Steven Sikes
most pitiful thing there is is when people think there is nothing
new to learn. There is always something new. Every day is a rare
and unprecedented opportunity to learn and to have fun. Children
learn an incredible amount because they are open and unbiased.
A child can play with a stick and delight and all the while the
child is learning. Learning to move and to coordinate itself.
A child can watch the same movie over and over and still shudder
with delight, still shiver with fear and laugh with abandon even
though the child knows what is coming. Children are learning machines
and have untold hours of play and joy until of course they are
trained to behave like young adults and are confined to desks
and told to act appropriately. Adults look for the pay off kids
simply learn for the sheer pleasure it brings them. As adults
we need to recapture the sense of joy and adventure we had as
children, we need to rekindle a sense of growing and contributing.
athlete seeks his or her personal best, the athlete pushes oneself
and excels. No one is more disappointed than athlete who gives
up without pushing harder. If an athlete can seek to excel so
should we as adults. We should do it for its own reward, but we
need to do it a bit differently, we need to do it like children.
you realize that by current estimates if you read one hour a day
in your field that within three years you would be a top expert
in your field, within five a top expert in the country and within
ten the world. Turn your car into a learning university to listen
to tapes that promote growth and well being. Listen and learn.
time is the only commodity we have, once it is gone it is too
late, we must take advantage of time and invest in our selves.
is really sad when NLPers don't have resources or are blinded
by beliefs, rules and adult prejudices. It is exciting when people
reach deep into themselves and produce the results they want,
and delight themselves and others.
idea can change the entire world. We need a better class of thinkers,
innovators, juicier people with explosive curiosity and creativity.
Fun loving people who can change the world. Seriousness is truly
a disease. We need giggles and shudders and risk takers. Exploration
is the doorway to adventure. Or as Oliver Wendall Holmes said
"A mind stretched to a new idea can never go back to its
original dimension." Love learning, learn for no reason at
all. Love seeking.
a walk somewhere you always go and walk there as though it is
totally new, pretend you are an anthropologist doing an ethnographic
study, making the know elusive and bewildering. See what you notice
that you didn't before. Ask yourself questions you might never
ask about obvious things. Try walking and only looking no internal
dialogue. Slow down your gait or speed it up to notice what you
have missed before. Smell the smells you may not have noticed.
Do the same thing with driving home or riding a bus. See if you
can't open your powers of observation to take in more than you
ever realized was there before. Venture into new realms. Take
a different way to work or to go home, do something different
anything different just for variety. It may seem uncomfortable
at first but realize you are interrupting patterns and causing
your mind to be stretched in delightful ways. Go back and enjoy
a children book you once read. Go back and review.
the same movie a dozen times, or NLP tape and each time approach
it fresh, new, you will learn something. When I lived in California
and worked in the motion picture business I would go to the same
movie 4,5, 10 times. First I would just watch it. If I got hooked
into it emotionally I considered it a good picture, captivating.
Then I would go back and watch for the way the director constructed
it all, I would see it again to concentrate only on the writing,
then the acting, then the cinematography and production values.
Each time I came away with something I hadn't noticed before.
With new intent I noticed new things. By asking myself different
questions, or causing my mind to look in a new direction I noticed
more and more nuances than I could have ever imagined.
about it two people go to the same movie one loves it another
hates it and tells you not to go. Are they really talking about
the movie? No they are sharing with you what they paid attention
to. They are letting you know how their mind works? Valuable information
for the NLPer. No movie is truly universally good or bad, there
are things about it one likes while another may not. Of course
the more sophisticated knowledge one has about what one is discussing,
or the more nuances, perhaps the better to make assessment, still
it is only opinion. That is why recapturing joy of learning, reading,
listening to tapes, attending seminars, going for walks, playing
with children, is so vital because it enriches an individual and
enables one to pay attention to nuances. Immerse yourself. If
you learn any one new concept or idea that you may not have realized
before it can be monumental. You can become more creative, you
can begin to open doors that you didn't even know existed.
to the same CD over and over - only each time pay attention to
a different instrument, how do they intermingle, compliment, each
other, support each other, what are they accomplishing together.
Try tasting your food in new ways. Tiny bits, savor each morsel,
really chew it thirty two times. Discover how you can delight
your senses. Take a luxurious bath, uses different scents, candles.
Anything that enlivens you and makes you feel better. Read a novel
you wouldn't, read a biography of someone you never would, someone
repulsive and take their point of view temporarily. Step inside
them and see if you can imagine how it would be that they would
hold views contrary to your own. You don't have to keep them only
try them on to get a different perspective from your own.
something you would absolutely never do (keep it legal and safe)
just to go beyond your own limits. Push yourself, but do so with
a sense of adventure, joy, fun, harmony, health and well being.
Discover if by trying some of these things we can't more enliven
ourselves to all the opportunities around us we could be missing
out on. Find out if we can do better in business, make change
more dynamically for ourselves and clients, spice up our relationships
with more passion and ecstasy, have more rollicking times with
loving exciting people can change the world. With so much in the
news that could discourage us we need to be beacons, lights that
glow in the night that show the rest of the world that we can be
more alive, more in love, have greater well being and riches, use
our brain power more efficiently and most importantly live joyously.
Perhaps if we were all just a little more joyous even in the face
of adversity, we will make the world a better more wondrous place.
Because the truth is it is already a most wondrous place, the sad
part is too many people miss it. Recapture the awe struck wonder
of a child in what ever you do, bring that spirit to all of your
learning and all of your endeavors and you will sore as never before.
You will reach untold heights when you break old patterns and habits
that have prevented you from being open to new experience. To often
we have nominalized a learning or an experience with 'Well that's
just X' or we say 'There is nothing new in that." Yet ever
moment is new, even an old hand me down cloth is new to someone,
often times rare and priceless antiques were discovered by people
who knew what to look for when others had considered it only junk.
Sometimes subtly and layers hides the core of its value and only
to the eye of a trained observer will one begin to notice what is
really going on, or what the real value is, to the child it doesn't
matter, it is all wonderful even if it seems old to us. My nephew
Michael who is three has just completed watching Beauty and the
Beast once a day, sometimes twice since it is out on video. That
is somewhere in the neighborhood of 500 - 700 times. He still wants
to watch it and he still delights every time he does.