The Downside of Continuous Learning

Conference Speaker Large AudienceI love to learn and the Internet gives you access to amazing training of every kind, much of it for free, available 24-7. However, here comes a big BUT…

Access to all manner of education at your finger tips is both terrific and a trap.  Being in perpetual learning mode can keep you stuck because there is always more to know, another tutorial to watch, another conference to attend, another training program to buy.

Do you find yourself thinking, "just one more class, just one more book, just one more workshop…and then I'll be ready."  I know from experience, that can happen.

In my world, presenting on video or TV, public speaking, even professional writing are skill sets that are mastered by doing.  Book learning and an academic understanding of the media field are great but they are not enough. You must perform.

Whether in front of the camera or behind it, you get good by doing the work.  Some people come into the arena with more innate talent than others, but i know from my days on TV that everyone can improve by taking action.  You’ll make mistakes along the way, as all humans do, but mistakes are often the best learning tools.

The more you do, the more confident you become in your abilities and the better your performance skills become.  Strive for a good grounding in the basics and implement that knowledge.  As your mastery in one area grows, you can tackle more and more advanced skills. 

How can you break out and start applying what you have learned?

  • Plan for learning time and doing time
  • Get educated enough
  • Set a goal
  • Take action
  • Measure your results
  • Tweak what you’re doing to improve it
  • Take more action

As I talk to various experts and authorities, I see them get caught up in the notion that they have to know everything to call themselves experts. But the truth is, in most fields, there is simply too much to know.  It’s why top professionals specialize.  Jack of all trades, master of none is still an apt expression.

I am a lifelong learner, always wanting to know more and be more so I have to stay mindful and work at being in action mode. Maybe you are like that too.

I encourage you to examine your feelings about your level of expertise and mastery of your field and commit to taking more action, rather than endlessly “preparing.”

No matter how much you know, inactivity will never accomplish anything.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on learning and performance. Leave a comment.

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Janet Vasil

On-Camera, Speaker & Media Trainer/Coach at Vasil Media Group | Your Media Moment & Beyond
Corporate Communication On-Camera, Speaker & Media Trainer-Coach Janet Vasil is a former award-winning, EMMY®-nominated TV Journalist who helps business professionals, employees, managers, and executives master LIVE, virtual, and video speaking to grow as leaders. Contact at http://bit.ly/Talk2Janet

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