Saturday, 13 July 2013

Just Blow Up Your Brain

I have spent the last week in a valiant effort trying to blow up my brain, seriously.  Here's how you go about doing it.  Chose a venue full of people who are generally older, more knowledgeable and more experienced than you.  Go ahead and plunk yourself (along with them) in the middle of a course which is geared towards people with twice your credentials and for which you have no preparation except perhaps a course or two . . . four years ago.  Then stay there, for one whole week.  In other words attend a conference similar to the one I was at this week (though you do have my blessing to attend one that is relevant to your occupation.)

Stretching your brain such as I described above has positive numerous effects.  Though to be entirely honest you probably won't appreciate them until you're done.

  • It will show you just how much you don't know and point out where you need to focus your learning.  You'll find out first hand where you need to concentrate your efforts, be that improving a single skill or taking time to get an over view of a certain subject.  
  • You'll meet a lot of smart people.  As a result of my course I am on a first name basis with two of the professors who will be teaching me during my masters (which starts in September.)  Both of them have expressed that they look forward to seeing me in their classes.  
  • You'll meet people further along you're career path.  Chances are they'll also be like the second year masters students that I got to know and they will be more than happy to give you lots of advice that they wish they had known in your shoes.  
  • You'll sharpen your thinking.  Usually when they start giving you complex theories it's not about the memorization, it's about making connections and analyzing what you have in front of you.  This subsequently bleeds into other areas of your life.  
  • You'll be ahead of the ball.  While all of your peers are learning the basics you're moving onto more complicated materials and making connections with what you're presented.  
  • You'll learn some new stuff.  I put this last because it is also the least important.  Sure you're going to walk away with some new knowledge in your brain but that is of minimal importance compared to what is listed above.  
Whether it be for school, work, or personal growth I recommend you skip ahead and take the next level of what ever interests you.  Occasionally trying to blow up your brain is good for you and life's too short to be spent taking baby steps the entire way.  

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