learn less.

I just had breakfast and now it’s time for learning. Super excited. I go to my desk. I open my laptop, I open up Notion — my favourite note-taking app — , and I open the UX Design online course which I’m currently doing on Coursera.

I’m super excited because I want to learn more about UX Design. I’m curious and I think it might be helpful in the future. Maybe one day I’ll find it useful for my job or for my own products.

As always, I’m taking notes, trying to understand the information, and connecting it to what I already know. This is the third online course I’m doing. Before the UX Design course, I did an Introduction to Psychology course and an Introduction to Tensorflow course, which is a programming course.

I’m keen to learn new information because it sparks my curiosity and fascinates me. My Notion is full of notes regarding programming, psychology, and now also UX design.

But somehow, after today’s learning session I feel a bit weird. I don’t have the typical satisfying feeling of learning something new. I know that I also had this feeling before, during the other online courses.

So I start thinking more and more about it.

Out of balance. The information we can learn is increasing. Our interest in new fascinating areas is pulling on our attention. We might come across an article that sparks our interest. We might watch a video that inspires us. We try to keep up with the information and our interests. All we do is learn more and more. All we do is to try to increase our knowledge more and more.

But learning is more than just increasing knowledge. To be satisfied with learning we have to find a balance between knowledge — knowing raw information — and wisdom — experience based on the knowledge we have.

Therefore, only increasing our knowledge brings us out of balance. Which can slowly lead to frustration — as it did for me. Instead of building knowledge, we should focus on building wisdom as well.

The learning trifecta. We build knowledge by consuming information and connecting new information to old information we already learnt. Like I did for the endless online courses that I was curious about. This act of learning misses an important step. Applying. We have to apply what we’ve learnt. Applying will help us build not only knowledge but also wisdom.

Consuming and connecting can build knowledge.

Consuming, connecting, and applying can build wisdom — the true learning trifecta.

So instead of learning more and more, learn less. Learn less so that you can take time to apply what you’ve learnt. Build wisdom in addition to knowledge and find your balance again.

The personal adjustment I did. For me, this meant to find, define, and include learning projects for what I’m trying to learn. I took this to heart and tried to find my balance. After the UX course, I sat down and made a list of what I want to learn.

I wrote down what I want to learn, why I want to learn it, and how I can use and apply it. After doing this, I picked the one that resonated with me the most in terms of knowledge and application.

Right now, I’m learning more about Vue.js, which is another programing language. And I use it by building my own version of a digital bullet journal.

What are you learning and how are you applying it?

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