When I worked at a college several years ago, we often talked about the importance of developing lifelong learning skills. Learning the skills is secondary to fostering an attitude of lifetime learning. It requires the desire to anticipate possibilities, humility to change, and interactions with people and ideas. It requires thinking through things and developing theories, then engaging doubts and contradictions, then reworking established assumptions to incorporate the new that is trustworthy.
Lifelong learning admits “I don’t know it all.”
It continues “…but I want to know more.”
There is no shortage of access to “more.” We have access to a staggering amount of information. But content isn’t nearly as important as process when lifelong learning is concerned. It’s not what you know as much as what you do with it – and what you are potentially capable of knowing. Lifelong learning is exciting, difficult, and worthwhile.
I certainly cannot learn, access, or absorb everything, but the past year-plus has brought many changes that have invited opportunities to learn, grow, and change. It hasn’t been just about forging forward; much lifelong learning involves looping into the past to rework, reflect, heal, and reconcile.
Lifelong learning is not a direct route, but the journey is worth the effort.
Open your eyes, ears, mind, heart, and soul today.