Why a Good Old Book is Still the Best Way to Learn New Skills and Mindsets
To become a better studier and learner, you must develop the skills, habits, and mindsets that the best students are using to get their results. But how should you go about this? Resources online are a great place to learn about these and discover the steps to take, but articles online are easy to lose and difficult to consistently return to, making it difficult to build the habits and mindsets you want to. Furthermore, with the overwhelming amount of articles, it can be hard to distinguish one clear approach and goal you will follow. Though they are great for discovering approaches and resources, they are less effective in making you set, and stick to, your goals and see long term change. To make the commitment necessary to improving, and have a daily reminder to stick to your goals, reading a book even for just ten minutes a day is matched by nothing else. The physical presence of the book in your room and the daily reading will keep you learning and also in the right committed mindset, helping you improve every day.
There are countless ways to learn new skills for self improvement in the Internet age. But with so many different improvements to learn about, and so many different sources, it can be difficult to commit yourself to any single one enough to see results. Some studies have even shown that online text is less immersive and does not connect with readers on an emotional level as well as physical writing. When you seek to improve yourself through smarter learning approaches, emotional connection to the message of an article is crucial to bringing you to take action.
One day you may be reading articles about how to focus more and procrastinate less (we have one here, for example). This is great, as it means you have a desire to improve in this area which is the crucial first step. Discovering a topic of interest like this should set you off on a path of learning more and implementing what you learn, which is what leads to incredible results. But when you return to your computer the next day, the tabs will have been closed (or in my case, drowned in the countless open tabs), and it is likely you will not return to them anytime soon. You may find new articles on procrastination, or discover an entirely new subject.
When you use the internet to learn new skills and habits, there is so much information out there that it can be overwhelming and hard to pick any one piece of advice and go with it. This makes it difficult to set a path and follow it. Books, on the other hand, commit you to just one or a few authors, making it easier to stick to one course and see progress.
Building new habits can be difficult, but it becomes much harder when you do not have them clearly articulated, and implement some sort of specific daily reminder of your goals and the benefits they will bring. This is difficult to achieve with internet resources unless they are printed out, or always open in a window you will see them. Furthermore, with numerous articles by different authors your exact goals and the steps you will take to get there can become muddled. Though the abundance of information available is an amazing thing, sometimes when first starting out with improving yourself it can be much more useful to have just one expert on the subject guiding you.
For this reason, when I want to improve myself in an area, learn a new skill, or develop a new mindset, I go with an authoritative book on the subject. It keeps me engaged in my goals, and by reading it front to back I feel as if it lays out a more logical approach to improvement than an assortment of online articles. I recommend you try it next time you discover something you would like to improve. This is the reason you may have noticed that so many of the contributors to IntelligentStudying.com make references to the books which they found most influential and informative in developing their smarter study habits. A collection of the books that have been recommended for a variety of different topics can be found here.
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