For most of us, learning takes a hike as soon as we graduate. While we expect to slowly learn some work-related skills, for the most part, we don’t think of our education as a lifelong process. We graduated. We got the degree. Been there, done that. Right?
Actually, we can keep learning our entire lives, and new evidence shows that we should be. Instead of considering our list of life-skills complete at age 25, we should actively try to learn new skills throughout our lives. Without further ado, here are a few of the benefits to learning a new skill.
Unless you’re a neurosurgeon, you probably don’t spend a ton of time staring at pictures of the human brain. Take it from us, though–there’s white matter in your brain called myelin. Myelin helps you perform more effectively in multiple areas of life. Learning a new skill increases the myelin in your brain, so it’s true what they say–intelligence is more of an achievement than a package you receive at birth. Learning a new skill can help you improve your own performance levels. One new skill may make the next one easier to learn. When you learn something new, your brain makes new neural pathways. The more of these pathways are formed, the faster your mind can make connections. Learning a new skill can–literally–speed up your brain.
Besides all the benefits it provides your brain, a new skill improves other areas of your life as well. For one thing, you won’t be as bored. Even though we have a world of entertainment at our fingertips, the average American is bored. In fact, a recent study shows that 30 to 90% of Americans feel bored on any given day. The answer? While the cure for boredom is different for everyone, we know a new life skill can banish the mundane. Humans are meant to do, not watch, so pick up a new adventure. Take advanced surf lessons or go hang-gliding. Learn something new.
Besides helping your brain and curing boredom, a new life skill can also make you a more interesting person. You might feel a little uncool, maybe a little bland around the edges. The cure for that isn’t to feel sorry for yourself–it’s to get up and do something about it! Learning a new talent, or even a new career path can help round you out as a person. Whether it’s an ASE Automotive degree or taking up the violin, a new skill can help you feel better about yourself.
Life doesn’t have to stay the same. In fact, it won’t. Whether you want it to or not, life will constantly be changing. Instead of getting too familiar with life’s ruts, keep adapting. With every passing year, if you practice positive life changes, it will be easier to face any life changes that come around. Learning a new skill doesn’t have to apply only to high school or college–we can all be learning new things, each and every day.