Never Stop Educating Yourself

ID-10041080I’m a huge believer in the value of continued education. No one is ever at a point where they can stop educating themselves, and if you do stop, you’ll surely fall behind in your field.

We can’t always be enrolled in a higher education course, though, so what is the most logical way to continue educating yourself well into your professional life? While the best way to learn indefinitely depends on your lifestyle, your specific field, and your learning style, here are my three favorite ways to keep on top of new (and old!) developments in business.

Read articles and books. Thought leaders are always writing articles and books about their fields, sharing their perspectives on the ins and outs of their specialties. While these pieces will always have some degree of opinion in them, and you won’t always agree with everything you read, well written articles and books will get you thinking, get you interested, and leave you wanting to do your own follow up research.

Attend conferences. When you attend a conference and you listen to the keynote speaker, if those in charge of organizing the event did their job, the speaker not only taught you a little something, but got you fired up to go out and learn more. Not only is the keynote speaker a great source of continued education at conferences, smaller sessions and even other attendees can help get your gears turning, and teach you something you didn’t know before.

Practice practice practice. You probably haven’t reached the point where you can do anything perfectly every time, and even if you have, going without practice can cause you to lose your skill. How can you get better at something if you don’t do it? What’s more, talk to colleagues, people you respect in your field, or consult the internet for new techniques as you’re practicing. If you keep practicing something the wrong way, you’ll get really good at doing it wrong. If you practice something in new and different ways, you’ll be more likely to round out that skill level.

How do you continue your education? Let me know in the comments below!

8 thoughts on “Never Stop Educating Yourself

  1. Hi Ivan, Listening more will always improve our education, this is when we learn vs. talking…..reading good real life stories and of course by getting out there and doing it……Action creates results and we learn from our failures…..

  2. I’m a huge fan of the Audible app on my phone. I’ll listen to a book about business, success, sales & marketing, etc while I’m driving in between appointments. Thanks to Audible, I “read” a book a week! 😉

  3. The best way to practice is to lose your fear of failure/rejection and call on as many people as you can and introduce yourself. Then let them know you are interested in making an appointment to explain how you can help them get what they want. The more you practice it with real live potential customers, the better you will get at it until it becomes second nature as you learn how best to sound to people who don’t know you or know they can trust you. That’s why the best athletes, musicians, writers, you name it practice their skills every day. So when they get a chance to play, they know what they are doing, know to do it right, and do it right more often than not.. Most of us who work, like in sales, have to put ourselves in the game every day. It’s every performance is another chance to practice. And every practice is a chance to perform.

  4. Besides attending self-improvement and other courses and reading books and articles, I’ve been listening to some interesting podcasts, including BNI’s, which I am a huge fan, by the way.

  5. I ask colleagues I respect what they have read or conferences they’ve attended and what they gained and how they applied it. Then do/read the things that are a match for my current goals. I also try to live a new concept for a period of time so I don’t get Idea overload. Example, spent a year with Simon Sineks Start With Why….it was an awesome year of discovery and better habits.

  6. Also, putting everything you learn into practice, making it naturally part of your regular day, drives you to adjust and improve something and that can make you learn again with rights and wrongs… I mean, keeping everything one learns through lifetime gets you nowhere. I’m from Brazil and here reading is not something people like, but attending lectures, courses, workshops…. Thousands do. But what do they do with that?
    In my case, I take a piece of information and apply it making it fit the best to me, then i go after more. I love to learn and moreover to see if it works out for me. All the best.

  7. Continuing with educating ourselves should become a lifelong obsession. Keep learning, keep listening, keep attending seminars about your own profession and about self improvement. Keep listening to audio books while travelling and driving. Your travel time can be put to use for your continuing education. The best skill any entrepreneur can learn is “to keep learning”! I have become a big fan of you Dr.Misner since I joined a BNI chapter some 40 months ago. Thanks for everything including the education I had been getting from the BNI eco system!

  8. I routinely network with folks smarter than I’ll ever be in areas I know little or nothing about. I learn from them all the time. I allow myself to admit to not knowing something, hoping someone else who does will help me learn. And they almost always do!

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