Tag: learning

Curiosity

“Curiosity is something that goes from the inside out, not the other way around – and it exists before you have experience.”  – Moshe Feldenkrais

 

Think about your best teachers?  Weren’t they the ones who indulged your innate curiosity?  The ones who let you explore the areas of a subject that called to you (and in the process required you to know more about the subject as a whole)?

Yes, there may be a curriculum, a general knowledge that speaks to being educated.  But how that knowledge is imparted – that is where the rubber hits the road.  The truly great teachers are those who know how to ignite the spark of curiosity in their students; then sit back and watch as the students approach the subject with a hunger to learn more.

The recitation of facts and figures does little to whet the imagination.  But make a subject relevant – therein lies the key to worlds of learning.

 

Failure

“…failure is social in origin.” Moshe Feldenkrais

 

Without someone to tell you that your attempts are failures, would you believe that your efforts are anything other than what they truly are – attempts to do something that somehow missed the mark?  possibilities tried and rejected?  personal experiments?  tools for learning rather than fodder for either societal or self-judgment?

 

 

 

“The Master Moves” page 193

Complexity and Skill

“The richer and more complex the life of a society, the greater is the skill required from the new generation…”Moshe Feldenkrais

 

Dr. Feldenkrais often spoke of his method as a way of learning how to learn.  He questioned educational approaches that rely on memorization and mimicry, favoring instead the use of experimentation and self-discovery.  He often noted that unless you can do something three ways, you do not know how to do it.  He was committed to teaching others how to engage in self-directed learning.

24. Learning is NOT Life

Byron_FanLife happens.

In life, there are moments when it is best to forget yourself completely, when accomplishment becomes an immediate NEED and all thought of learning must be abandoned. The world is full of examples of people who exhibit super-human strength, who risk life and limb, in their efforts to save another or themselves from impending doom.

Drama aside…

To live fully is to allow yourself to act according to circumstances.

It also means differentiating a true state of emergency from that which is self-imposed.

Allowing yourself to learn – slowly and without struggle – brings you to that place where you CAN act quickly and powerfully when you need to.

Learning prepares you to perform the tasks of your life – be they highly skilled or ordinary – with grace and ease. In other words – BETTER.

Whatever demands you face in the future, know that all your mucking about, all the trial and error and going slowly with attention that you experience while you were learning are what bring you to the level of expertise that allow you to do what needs to be done with grace, skill and intuition.

What we have been talking about so far is explicit learning – the act of consciously setting out to learn something, anything, better. But there is another, deeper kind of learning that happens as a result of all that explicit learning. It’s called IMPLICIT learning.

Implicit learning is what happens when you no longer have to think about what you are doing. It is that deep knowing that does not require conscious thought. It is the result of hours of practice, focus, awareness, patience, and all the things we’ve been talking about. Implicit learning is what you experience when you’re in the zone. It’s what happens when you make appropriate choices without contemplating those choices. It’s what you exhibit when you are acting without thinking. In fact, shifting into “thinking” mode when you are in the zone takes you out of it and brings you back to a state of raw learning. Thinking, you become a novice once again and all your skill means nothing. That’s what happens when someone who is highly skilled chokes — they start to think about what they are doing rather than rely on and trust the deep well of knowledge that resides inside.

To create that deep well of knowledge, however, requires explicit learning. To live fully, to reach your own “zone” requires much learning.

So… Learn on!

21. Stop Trying

Helm_EyesLife may have its trials. But learning doesn’t need to.

Think of two students out to learn the same task. One applies himself, pushing as hard as he can in order to achieve his goal. The other makes a game of it, enjoying the process as much as he desires the result. Which gains ultimate success?

The drive to strive is founded on the notion that hard work is essential to achievement. It is rooted in the internal conviction that without struggle, all efforts are somehow invalid or inadequate – that the “student” is somehow inadequate. AND that redemption can only be earned through pushing, striving and struggle.

Paradoxically, all that “trying hard” inhibits the process of learning and hinders the ability to become fluent and fluid in your desired skill.

That’s not to say that effort and time are not required; or that a laissez-faire attitude will pay off. Learning is not a linear progression. It requires patience and, above all, curiosity.

Proficiency can only be achieved through diligence and practice. Yet neither require you to push, strive or struggle.

True learning comes when you abandon “trying” in favor of observing, assessing and experimenting. When you see that an option doesn’t work, get creative and find another approach. Be curious. Make the process enjoyable. In doing so, you will unburden yourself of struggle and open your mind and brain to untold possibilities for learning.

19. Let It Go

Conrad_HandDoes your mind latch onto the negative? If so, you’re not alone. Survival instinct has given the human brain a negative bias. BUT you are NOT your bias. YOU, the very human you, have the ability to redirect your focus away from the negative and set your sights on all things positive.

You have the ability to “let go” by re-framing your thoughts and experiences to become tools for learning rather than one more reason to perceive yourself as a failure.

Conduct an informal poll of people who have become successful. Without exception, you will discover that there were many mistakes, false starts, detours and in some cases outright disasters on their path to success. AND YET – they became successful.

How?

By recognizing those things that weren’t success for what they TRULY are – stepping stones TO success.

It takes FIVE positives to counteract each negative. The power to create those positives is in YOUR hands.

Next time something “not success” happens to you, take a moment to re-frame and count your blessings in the form of learning. What did you learn from the experience? If you’ve been attending to your actions and motivations you’ll have lots of options. A new awareness of what you did or the glimmer of a new possibility all count as positive learning moments.

Can’t think of five? Were you paying attention to yourself? Review what you did and why. NOW can you think of five things you learned?

Let go of negative self-talk by re-framing your experiences and seeing them as learning opportunities. Overnight success takes lots of learning.

What did you LEARN today?

Let’s Get Sinek-al

Have you ever heard of Simon Sinek? Me neither. At least not until my friend, Kim LeClair sent me her latest issue of Find Your Unique. (Check it out yourself at http://www.findyourunique.com).

Seems Mr. Sinek isn’t nearly as cynical as his name suggests. He’s spent a lot of time hanging out with the U.S. Marine Corps trying to figure out what makes those guys tick. What is it that allows them to put themselves in harm’s way for the sake of others? The answer and how they “learned” to do what they do may surprise you. It sure did me.

The marines are known for their hardcore basic training that finds them crawling through mud under barbed-wire fences at all hours on little sleep and…. you get the idea. Definitely not anyone’s idea of a spa weekend. But did you know that in addition to the infamous obstacle course, Marine recruits must also face a confidence course? It’s that one, more than anything else, that makes them marines. Curious? I’ll let Simon Sinek give you the details…

http://creativemornings.com/talks/simon-sinek/1

Yes, the talk is long but a lot of it is Q & A at the end. Listen up to the 17:30 mark and you will learn what the Marine Corp training program has to teach the rest of us.

So what is a post like this doing in Movement Matters? Simply, it’s about learning and discovering what makes us human. It’s about finding how to live fully. And THAT Matters!

13. Set a Fuzzy Goal

Wooden_TreeWhat is a goal? Is it an endpoint? Or, could it be something more – a way station on the way to something bigger, better, MORE than you can possibly conceive?

When you think of a goal as an endpoint, it becomes easy to fixate on achieving. In the process you kick into high gear and find yourself knee deep in the habitual strain that accompanies the desire to get somewhere and get there now.

That strain, in turn, results in excessive and often inefficient effort that paradoxically works to keep you from achieving the very thing you desire. Or achieving in a way that finds you exhausted and unsure of how you got to where you are or where to go from there.

The antidote to all that strain is to set a “fuzzy” goal, to look at your desired outcome as a POSSIBILITY instead of an ultimate. When you do that, when you let go of “achieving”, you slip into learning. There, in that state of potential, you open yourself to the possibility of more – higher achievement, greater efficiency, greater and more success. ALL in a way that is repeatable.

Learning is the state in which you take small actions, notice what happens, assess the impact and make small adjustments in the direction of your desire. Learning allows you to let go of the effort that holds you back, it clears you to find ease and efficiency in your actions. Learning awakens you to your true potential. It broadens your horizons and creates the possibility of exceeding the limits of your imagination.

Achieving, on the other hand, is the state of pushing ahead regardless the cost. Achieving means putting on blinders, focusing only on your goal even if you have no clear idea of how to get there. It leads you forward without concern for the effects of your actions – on yourself and the world around you. Achieving limits you to what you can conceive. It has a finite endpoint with no hope of something better.

Push to achieve or pay attention to learn. One may get you to your goal. The other may well take you there and beyond. Which will you choose?