THE ART OF LEARNING VOLUNTARILY
Written on the 3rd of August, 2020
Photo by Gaspar Zaldo
I never understood when people said they were bored. It seems nearly impossible in the time and age we’re in. G.K. Chesterton said, “There are no uninteresting things, only uninterested people.”
“HUMAN BEINGS MAKE LIFE SO INTERESTING, DO YOU KNOW THAT IN A UNIVERSE SO FULL OF WONDERS, THEY HAVE MANAGED TO INVENT BOREDOM. (Death)”- Terry Pratchett, Hogfather
Boredom can either lead to complaints or open up a world of innovation and vast discovery. Knowledge is the gateway to investing in yourself. Every time I learn something new, I’m pretty sure my dopamine rises; at least that’s how I feel anyway. Exploration and gaining knowledge is rewarding in the immediate present and also in the future. You‘ll never feel like you wasted your time. It flirts with your interests and helps you choose to lean towards which one deserves your deeper involvement.
These are my favorite past time; the perfect thing to engage in while doing mundane activities. It makes sure you continually learn and gaining new perspectives. I admit it was a hard habit to implement. It’s so much easier to put on some music and not have to engage your mind but the benefit of learning is well worth it.
Let me tell you how I do it. I’d call it a ritual. I associate a specific mundane activity with listening to my podcast. After a while, your brain starts to do this for you unconsciously. For me, its laundry. Here are some podcasts I’d recommend:
- Third Culture Africans by Zeze Oriahki-Sao
- On Purpose with Jay Shetty
- Conversation with the Fit Priest
- Work In Progress with Sophia Bush
- Building You with Hayley Mulenda
How do you know what you’re interested in? This is such a good way to broaden your interests regardless of the path you’re on at the moment. You can only discover your purpose if you see what’s out there. Learning itself is delightful and it helps you make a more informed decision about your life. It unlocks passions you didn’t know you had. Right now this is helping me narrow my choices for a Master of Science degree.
These are the ultimate wealth of knowledge. They are compact packs of tons of research on a particular topic. They help you with learning, gain new insights, start new practices, and escape to another world. Building a reading habit can be hard especially in this digital age but it is well worth it. Here are some books I’d recommend:
- Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
- The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
- The subtle art of not giving a f*ck by Mark Manson
- Atomic Habits by James Clear
- The 5AM Club by Robin Sharma
I’m actually in love with this a little bit. I love the fact that you can gain adequate knowledge and insight just from a five-minute read. The compactness is so encouraging. Whether you’re reading a concise or detailed article you can expect to learn new information and learn a new and different perspective. Here are some of my favorites:
- How to Maximize Serendipity by David Perell
- Finding God’s Will for ’Not as Prophetic Christians by Michael Olasope
- The Simple Joy are the Most Meaningful- Mark Manson
- A woman’s body is not a sin- Michael Olasope
- You and Your Research by Richard Hemming on Paul Grahams Website
There is so much range when it comes to YouTube. Content creating has grown so much on there and there is an unimaginable number and array of content. From fun and entertaining videos to inspiring and educative videos, YouTube has content for everyone.
Personally, this app introduced “content creation” to me and helped me discover and develop a lot of my new interests and passions. It can help to pinpoint and streamline your true passion or passions; from filmmaking to interior design to fashion and style to language learning to makeup to travel and even to content creation.
These are the normal things that we’ve become accustomed to doing as leisure or lazy activities. It’s as simple as watching movies or series, listening to music, watching sports, and even playing video games. Although they are all tools used to relax we can’t deny the fact that they expose us to different crafts and maybe draw us closer to what might be one of our life calling.
Immersion is the key. To achieve contact with reality is not to transport oneself elsewhere, it is not transcendence but through immersion in one’s surroundings. A reality which is neither purely physical nor metaphysical, but at once. — Antonio Tapies
Maya Angelou said “When I look back, I am so impressed again with the life-giving power of literature. If I were a young person today, trying to gain a sense of myself in the world, I would do that again by reading, just as I did when I was young.” This quote even though just referring to literature is an embodiment of exactly my point. You can’t find yourself unless you expose yourself to the wealth of knowledge that is on the earth. Learning is always the first step.