We are often told that with the right attitude we can achieve anything. If we believe in ourselves, the sky is the limit.
But while attitude and mindset play a crucial role in achieving our life goals, most goals are just not a walk in the park. They require some effort to climb uphill and cross a learning curve.
To simply ignore the fact that you don’t already know everything there is to know to reach your goal means you’ll be running around in circles wondering why you’re not making any progress. And the reason why you’re not making any progress is that you’re refusing to go in the direction where the learning curve is. You can’t see your goal and can’t find a way to get there because you have to go past the learning curve to get to your goal.
No climbing, no success.
Knowledge & Skills
When I talk about learning curves, I’m usually referring to two kinds of curves:
1) Learning something new
2) Developing a new skill
You can memorize what a keyboard looks like. That’s knowledge. But fast typing is a skill. You need both knowledge and skill to reach your goals. Both require practice. The more you learn, the easier it is to learn more.
What knowledge you need to acquire and what skills you need to develop depends on the goal you’re pursuing.
But what matters is acknowledging that you need to pass the learning curve to get to your goal.
Admit That You Don’t Know
One of the main reasons why we struggle to reach our goals is the refusal to admit when we don’t know. We find it offensive to say that we’re ignorant. It’s demeaning. It expresses a lack, when we should be singing our own praises and repeating positive mantras.
But if you’re unwilling to admit that you don’t know, you’ll never have the courage to face your learning curves. You will struggle to make sense of an incline when you’re expecting a flat surface. But rather than admit that the ground isn’t flat, you try to motivate yourself to believe that it is!
That’s not dedication. That’s delusion.
Learning curves can only be passed by learning something new. Admitting that you don’t know isn’t an insult. It’s a fact, and one you should embrace wholeheartedly.
Let people know you’re struggling to understand a concept. Ask for support. Seek out recommendations. Read up on the basics of a new subject, without thinking that it’s below you to admit that you’re a novice. You are, so act the part. You can only climb a learning curve if you know where you stand along the curve.
Before you know, you don’t.
Before you can, you can’t.
At least that’s what Nature seems to tell us.