I thought I was great at learning...
As a kid I memorized a 20 move chess sequence after the instructor went through once.
I got great grades through high school, but when I got to college I realized I had no idea how to actually learn.
I memorized everything I needed to know the week before exams and promptly forgot everything after finishing the exam.
I managed to score well until each class started building on the knowledge you're supposed to have from the previous one.
I was spending more and more time playing catchup, scoring well on the exam, and repeating the cycle the next semester.
I worked hard, but I never learned how to learn properly so I was wasting time every single day.
And that's not the only thing I wasted time on...
I read hundreds of books, thinking I was learning something, but being unable to recall even the most important points when asked about it a week later.
I struggled to explain my reasoning in debates and conversations with co-workers and friends. Subconsciously I knew the right thing to do based on something I read, but I had no idea where I read it and what it even was so I couldn't contribute to the fullest.
I maintained my grades, but most of my time was spent on catching up and re-learning old material and I finally had enough.
It was time to change.
I always liked the non-conventional path
When people were getting regular jobs in high school I started an online business that brought in $50,000 before I turned 20.
When it was time to get an internship, instead of standing in long lines at the career fair handing out my resume to apathetic recruiters, I targeted only one company.
I researched them, created a video they could use, and stood out from the competition by providing them value when everyone else only offered their well-crafted resumes.
I don't say this to brag because compared to many, my accomplishments are not that impressive. I didn't create some life-saving drug, build the next Facebook, get into the NBA, or create a $100k/mo lifestyle business (yet).
I only say this to show that I knew that:
Non-conventional success was possible
I believed there was a way to do things better than I was doing them and all I had to do was discover it.
I've read, watched, and listened to more psychology, learning, and memory content than I thought was possible, and I'm still not done. (The list is too long to put here so you can find everything I've consumed here.)
Since then I've been able to:
- Learn Spanish faster than I ever thought possible, especially considering that I spent the same amount of time on learning Czech and couldn't speak a single word of it.
- Escape the endless catch-up cycle, stay ahead on my school work, and free up time to focus on other things.
- Retain information from books, podcasts, and courses for much longer than before and finally be able to use them in conversation! No more reading books to forget what they're about weeks later.
- Create connections between material (both work and non-work related) that I would not have been able to previously because of my (supposedly) limited memory.
- & much more that is currently in progress.
All of this is due to learning some crucial metaskills that I believe are required if you want to succeed in this increasing faster world.
You can fill out the form below if you want to get a no-fluff guide on 7 of the most important metaskills with the best ways to start learning and improving each of those skills.