At the age of 26, I’ve literally spent most of my life in school. I went to post secondary for four and a half years, somehow managing to graduate with a decent undergrad despite being an apathetic student the entire time. My issue rested in the fact that right until the very end, school always felt like a chore. I was disengaged and maintained grades just barely high enough to squeeze into the next year of my program. The content I studied rarely captured my quickly departing attention and in general, I was not mature enough at the time to appreciate what I was learning. My interests were in a completely different spectrum and I rarely saw the connect between them and education.
After university I took my sweet time to figure out what exactly I wanted to do next. Unintentionally, I spent a lot of it experimenting and learning more about myself. I tried out a variety of jobs, took some adventures, tried out some new places. All of which played a huge part in developing myself into a more mature and self-aware individual, something I am sure only life experience could provide. One of the epiphanies I ended up having since graduating is that I actually really enjoy learning when I have the ability to choose the content. As a student I was neither engaged or interested enough to appreciate education in the way I do now, and I am sure it would be a very different story were I to ever go back. Pre-graduation, my attention span was very short. I rarely read books for pleasure, never wrote, and generally was too drained from studying or hobbies to dive into learning about any newfound interests. Nowadays, these are all regular habits of mine. I have developed a small obsession with learning as much as I can and I have grown up A LOT.
“Change is the end result of true learning” – Leo Buscaglia
The simple act of learning a new skill creates unique pathways throughout our brain. Over time this makes our mind more efficient and helps it develop into an even more powerful machine. I’ve become a passionate learner. I study all kinds of subjects, from health and mindfulness to marketing and finance. My favourite of which is personal development and self understanding. This industry is often tainted with a perception of being shallow and misleading, but I believe it is one of the most worthwhile topics an individual can study. In my opinion, self awareness is king. It is one of the most valuable sets of skills we can learn. Understanding our personal talents, downfalls, interests and needs is essential for growing as a person. Knowing this information helps us understand and create personal priorities and goals. Self-awareness fosters challenge and has helped me to understand exactly what kinds of mountains I want to climb on a personal level. More than ever, I feel as though I am finally well aware of what I want from life, and how I can get there. I know exactly where I want to be five years from now. Continuous learning is going to play a huge part in the process, both professionally and personally, and I don’t plan on ever stopping. My younger self may have cringed at the thought of this, but I know it’s going to be a lot of fun.