Tag Archives: goals

Learning to unlearn

learn_bayt_medMore than ever in the history of mankind, the time is now to feed your hunger for learning – that is if you even have a hunger for learning. The overflowing information through the digital world has made it easy for all of us to accumulate as much knowledge on any subject of your choice as possible. Technology has truly revolutionized the art of learning.

Today I watch my 11-year-old son, downloading Photoshop, dream weaver, and much other software and sitting for hours and maneuvering his mind and imaginative senses to understand, comprehend and then put it into practice to come up with creative expressions. We as parents take pride in our children who display a larger than comprehensive talent, however, when it comes to us, so few of us are ready to take advantage of the same technology that is equally available to us. Should you make the effort to unlearn so you can learn? Here are some statistics for you to give it a good thought:

  • Adult education experts estimate that up to 40% of what tertiary students are learning will be obsolete a decade henceforth when they are  working in jobs that have yet to be created.
  • The top 10 most in-demand jobs today didn’t even exist 10 years ago.
  • By 2020, there will be more people over 65 years old than under age 15 in the world’s developed countries.

We live in a changing world understates the speed of both the pace and the scope of ongoing change. To add to this the social changes in family structure, the globalization of talent, and continued innovation in technology. It is hard to imagine just what the world, and it’s increasingly mobile workforce will look like 20 years from now. Certainly, nothing like it looked twenty years ago!

For the three-plus billion people in the workforce, it’s not just about keeping up with the rate of change and the nature of the work we do, but how we do it and where. When anyone can work from anywhere, it changes the nature of work everywhere. Traditional boundaries disappear, and the global talent pool becomes more skilled and mobile, which presents a challenge for people in developed countries to adapt faster to stay competitive. Your ability to adapt to changing face and proactively make changes in your career is what will make a crucial difference to where you find yourself even just five years from now. To quote Mr.  Darwin: ”It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.”

We are all born with an intense desire to learn, somewhere along the line many of us lose our passion for learning. The pressure to excel in school with its ever-pressing emphasis on test scores can rob the enjoyment from the process of learning. Whatever the reasons, once the basics are covered, many people tend to stick with what they know and avoid situations or challenges where they may mess up or be forced to learn something new, thus creating a safe, secure and comfortable (and confining) world for themselves. Most say they’re open to change, but actually do their best to avoid it. It’s time you wake up and smell the coffee.

Learning agility is the name of the game. Where the rules are changing fast, your ability to be agile in letting go of old rules and learning new ones is increasingly important. Learning agility is the key to unlocking your change proficiency and succeeding in an uncertain, unpredictable and constantly evolving environment, both personally and professionally. There are countless things you may have to unlearn in your job, business and career, even throughout  the next 12 months.

  • Unlearn the designs you use.
  • Unlearn the methodology you use.
  • Unlearn the technology you use.
  • Unlearn the way you approach your brand.
  • Unlearn the way you communicate your value.
  • Unlearn the way you deliver your value.
  • Unlearn the skills and knowledge needed to get to the next level.
  • Unlearn who your target market is, what they want and why.
  • Unlearn how to get the most from your employees.

Unlearning is about moving away from something—letting go—rather than acquiring. It’s like stripping old paint. It lays the foundation for the new layer of fresh learning to be acquired and to stick. However, like the painter who needs to prepare a surface, stripping the paint is 70% of the work while repainting is only 30%.

As the global economy evolves and market forces drive competition for jobs to new levels, it’s the people who have proactively worked to expand and diversify their skill sets that will be the best placed. The New York Times columnist Tom Friedman wrote, ‘Everyone had to bring something extra; being average is no longer enough. Everyone is looking for employees who critical thinking and problem solving can do, just to get an interview. What they are really looking for is people who can invent, re-invent and re-engineer their jobs while doing them.’

People who find opportunities in a changing environment are those who are actively looking for them. The choice is simple: act or be acted upon. Since change is the only constant, you can truly rely upon, learning to navigate and adapt to it is not just important to your survival, it’s essential for you to thrive in the bigger game of life.

As futurist and philosopher Alvin Toffler once wrote: “The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.” Think about it – think rich, think different.

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How clear is your vision?

 

I know what you are thinking – has she now changed over to Ophthalmology?  Just because you have a set of great working eyes through which you can see clearly, does not mean that you have a clear vision. Even bible says that a man without a vision shall perish – my goal is to not get spiritual here. However if Bible thinks every man needs to have a vision, imagine what would what successful principle book would say?

Nothing big can be achieved without a vision. Every significant thing that has been created or achieved was first conceived by someone in their minds. They saw it happening in the eyes of their mind and then worked hard to make it a reality. It is so unfortunate to see so many people who just go through life one day at a time without any dreams, aspirations or a desire to do anything significant. Statistics shows that only 20% of people in the world have

Here is a story of an amazing visionary. Phillip Petit is a French high-wire artist who gained fame in 1974 for his high-wire walk between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City. At an early age, the boy discovered magic and juggling. He loved to climb, and at 16, he took his first steps on a tightrope wire. Petit learned everything by himself, during a period when he was also expelled from five different schools. In his teens, Petit learned about the World Trade Center construction project in New York City. He read about the project that proposed building of the twin towers while waiting in a dentist’s office, and spent years planning to walk a high wire between the two buildings. Before he went to New York, however, Petit took on several other amazing tightrope challenges. In 1971, he traveled between the towers of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris on a wire. Two years later, he crossed the Sydney Harbor Bridge in Australia. In each instance, he had the help of friends in pulling off these impressive stunts.

In late 1973, Petit traveled to New York City. He spent months studying the World Trade Center’s twin towers. To visit the site, Petit assumed a number of disguises, including being a reporter and a construction worker. He took photographs and made measurements. With help of friends, Petit started hiding his equipment in the towers in early August. He and accomplices then tucked themselves away in the buildings on August 6, 1973, to prepare for the big event. In the morning of August 7, Petit stepped onto the tightrope, which was suspended between the two towers. A crowd of thousands soon gathered to watch the man on the wire more than 1,300 feet above them. For 45 minutes, Petit practically danced on the thin metal line.

It took Philip 6 years of planning and practicing to master that walk. The most important thing is Phillip conceived the idea by just looking at the picture of World Trade Center, it was not even built. That is what is called an absolute clear vision. In order for anyone to achieve anything significant, it is imperative to have a clear vision. When the vision is clear, you will be able to put the work behind it to make it come to fruition. The path will not always be easy but if our vision is crystal clear and we know for sure what we are after, nothing can stop us. No set back will be big enough to keep you away from achieving our vision or goal.

It’s about time that you create a clear vision for yourself. If you are not able to do it, ask for help, get mentoring or guidance from a person who has the fruit on the tree and not your family or neighbor. Clear your cobwebs, carve a vision for yourself, and then all you got to do is to dig deeper within you. Keep digging deep and keep enjoying the journey!

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