After graduation most people plateau in their learning, some even decline! The problem is that we get busy doing work and lose track of learning. While we grow from our experiences as we work, we should focus on growing faster than experience can teach us, and we need to do it with purpose. 60 minutes of your time is really valuable, but the return you get from it depends on where you invest it.
There Are Two Types of People
- The “Live and learn” type
- They stop thinking about growing after graduation, only learn from the school of hard knocks, and lack a direction for learning.
- The “Lifelong learning” type
- They think with an open mind, learn from other’s mistakes, and have a plan for their growth.
So which are you? Surprisingly, most people don’t think about this, but it isn’t their fault – no one ever told them they should! But I’m telling you now.
“Growth doesn’t just happen.” – John C. Maxwell
Last year I read The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth by John C. Maxwell. The first chapter explains “Growth doesn’t just happen”. A challenge in that chapter changed my life, and it will do the same for you if you’re willing to accept the challenge.
The Secret Value of 60 Minutes ~ The Challenge
Here is your challenge: Schedule 60 minutes a day, 5 days a week, to learn about something you want to grow in – and do it for an entire month.
Get up an hour earlier, stay up an hour later, give up your lunch hour, skip a TV show, whatever you have to do, do it. If you want to be a better writer, write an hour. A better runner, run an hour. A better parent, read about parenting. Whatever subject interests you – start learning about it and practicing it TODAY.
You Can Have Excuses or Results, Not Both
The challenge might seem daunting, but the results will dramatically change the way you see personal growth. For all of us there is a gap, filled with excuses, between where we are now and where we want to be. Here are some common excuses:
- I grow from experience
- That’s like saying “I’ll get in shape without changing my routine”. You have to make time for it if you want to grow at even an average pace.
- I don’t know how to grow
- It’s not the right time to begin
- Similar to “I’ll invest in retirement later.” Everyone knows you should invest early, the same goes for personal growth.
- I’m afraid of making mistakes
- The fastest way to grow is to fail fast and fail often. View failures as learning one more way something doesn’t work – not as a dramatic tragedy.
- I have to find the best way before I start
- Ever have a problem with an app on your phone? Developers don’t waste time perfecting them before selling them – they work out the minor bugs after launch, and so should you!
- I don’t feel like it
- Harvard psychologist Jerome Bruner said “You’re more likely to act yourself into feeling than feel yourself into action.” Motivation comes from action. Move, and you will find energy.
- Others are better than I am
- There will always be a bigger fish in the pond, or a bigger pond; accept that and learn from the successes and failures of the bigger fish.
- I thought it would be easier than this
- There aren’t many things in life that are easy and worth it; success comes from hard work and perseverance – grit your teeth and push through.
You probably won’t feel like doing it today, but do it anyway. Put in the first hour before bed tonight. Don’t look at the month, look at one day at a time. 60 minutes is a small investment to change your future, wouldn’t you agree?
“A time comes when you need to stop waiting for the man you want to become and start being the man you want to be.” – Bruce Springsteen
The Question for You
*The ideas in this post are directly from John Maxwell’s Book The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth – I can’t take credit for any of them, only for sharing them 🙂