I love learning! I have an absolute passion for it. It makes me feel alive, engaged and like I’m evolving. Learning rocks!
When I first started teaching Aikido something very cool happened. My own Aikido mastery took a quantum leap forward. I learned that I learn more from teaching than I do from learning. It took me a while before I connected the dots and saw that as a teacher I am also a student. I learn a great deal by externalizing what I have internalized and expressing that successfully to another human being. That then becomes a reflection back to me as I learn what’s really effective in the outside world as opposed to what I have taken as effective in my internal world.
Some statistics on how we retain information:
- 20% of what we hear
- 30% of what we see
- 50% of what we hear and see
- 70% of what we discuss or do
- 90% of what we create or teach
To me this indicates a virtuous circle. We learn so that we can teach so that we learn, and as we learn, our teachers learn because of our efforts. This seems to give lie to the phrase, “I want to learn from you…”
So, that’s my new distinction: I want to learn with you.
By the way, this is an awesome way to read a book – envisioning that you will teach a class on what you have learned some day to someone important to you. Combine that with taking margin notes and liberal underlining and you can literally consume a book rather than be entertained by it. Not that being entertained is bad, if that’s the goal.
[SPOILER ALERT: The following clip is both amusingly demonstrative, and the ending climax of one of my favorite movies.]