the trap of being a curious learner.

I usually like sitting down, reading a book or watching a tutorial, and trying to apply what I learnt. It feels good to learn new things. Until, one day, it didn’t feel great anymore.

Being a curious learner holds a trap.

There are a lot of interesting topics to learn. You might get exposed to new areas and interesting insights from different topics through tutorials, books, podcasts. Even a little side note or hint from the creator might spark your curiosity.

Which is not bad at all. We should definitely foster and nurture our curiosity. But at the wrong time, it can throw you off. You might get distracted by the new curiosity and lose focus on what you wanted to learn in the first place. Instead of building a meaningful skill, we start jumping around from a new topic to another new topic. Never spending enough time with one to deepen our understanding but just scratching the surface here and there.

By the time we want to go back to the old topic, we have almost forgotten everything. And now, there is a new barrier to familiarizing yourself again with the old topic.

This happened to me. I became a busy learner.

It is the same with productivity, where being busy is not being productive. So don’t become a busy learner. Be an intentional learner. Avoid the trap of getting distracted by everything that seems interesting.

One way to do it is by creating creative constraints for yourself. You might be able to do this with the two main questions from the bullet journal method.

First, you make a list. A list of topics, areas, or interests of what you should learn, have to learn, want to learn, or might want to learn. Everything that comes to mind.

Now go through the list and ask the two questions:

Does it matter? Do I want to learn this?

Is it vital? Do I have to learn this?

If the answer is yes, keep the item. If it is no, drop it.

Now, this list resembles your curiosity constraints. You will focus and learn the items in this list. If something sparks our curiosity, you pull out the list and check if it is part of it or if it is a subpart of anything. If yes, keep and follow your curiosity. If not, drop it; it will only get you distracted.

Use the bullet journal questions to get clear about what you want to learn and have to learn. So that you can spend your time and energy wisely.

If you want to talk about the post, bounce of ideas, or would be interested in a newsletter format, let's talk.