I remember during my undergraduate days in the University, I had come across a short quote about how learning is a continuous process, and about how we learn daily until we die. Taking deeper analysis of this, I think its a fundamental element of life to teach us new things daily, and our ability to view the life experience as a wonderful avenue of learning will make all new knowledge and life event; good or bad, very exciting. So, ultimately, I began to really consider the saying that ‘when you stop learning, you’re as good as dead.’
One of the most underestimated superpowers of all time, among a host others in today’s world is the ability to read a lot. Yeah, another boring endeavor, yet essential to personal development. It’s a skill I myself is yet to perfect, and frankly at first it’s difficult, but it’s an ultimately rewarding habit to develop.
There are two basic ways to feel alive. The first is to feel alive in your muscles and the second is to feel alive in your brain, and I think the most important is to feel alive in your brain, and with this two in place, you’re sure to feel alive everywhere else.
And truth is; this is the reason voracious readers are very attractive. The open mindedness and variety of perspectives that come from reading so much makes them look intelligent and ultimately makes it easy for anyone to find them attractive.
Now, among all the elements of self development, one fundamental element of oneself to develop is the attraction factor. And one doesn’t necessarily need to be beautiful to be very attractive. But an important element of attraction is carriage, and voracious readers subconsciously carry with them this air of confidence, which makes us find them very interesting personalities to engage with.
Now it’s almost a Nigerian factor to detest the idea of reading except to pass exams, and more than ¾ of the graduates from our universities stop reading anything after graduation. Reading is considered a subtle form of punishment; mental torture disguised in harmless looking yet boring pages, and I can boldly say it’s one of the ills bedeviling our beloved country.
If we observe carefully, successful people usually at the peak of their career write books. Take for instance; personalities like Obasanjo Kikiola Olusegun, Barak Obama, Opera Winfrey and so many more. And successful people usually have long histories of voracious reading. This is what broadens their mindset so much so that they can combine numerous elements effortlessly to work for them.
Guess what? The reason why you’ve got no interest in books or anything that requires you to read is because of you. Yes, it’s a psychological effect from accumulated childhood experiences.
But it’s not our fault that we consider reading to be punishment. It’s the mindset we grew into. We didn’t have parents who read voraciously, and whenever the topic of reading was mentioned, a whip (cane) factor was introduced. Our teachers emphasized that we must read otherwise we fail, and our brains encoded reading as a means to pass examinations alone.
I have been writing from infancy, but no one had taught me that reading could be enjoyed and viewed as a means of recreation just as a day in amusement parks was. But in life, regardless of your starting point, you are at fault for your outcome.
It will interest you to know that Elton Musk taught himself rocket science by reading and the same goes for personalities like Tadao Ando, Frank Lloyd and Mies Vander Rohe who are world class self-taught architects, and personalities like Alfred Brendel who is a professional self-taught pianist. I have tons of friends from both African and international descent who are self-taught website developers, programmers, hackers, photographers, painters, electronic engineers and so much more through reading.
One major way to invest in yourself as a person is to develop your reading culture, and sometimes even when you make efforts, you realize you have read a piece that doesn’t make much difference, but you will eventually notice how much easier you can come up with a solution to a certain problem just because you have read it in a book. You gradually accumulate knowledge in different topics, your brain will then make creative connections, and the end project is usually knowledge in numerous fields.
In a world where i can be difficult to carve a niche for yourself and be your own cheer leader, trust your struggle and ultimately enjoy life at whatever level you find yourself, knowledgeable people best know how to do it right. They are able to prioritize themselves, lose the shadows of their once considered ‘inferiority complexes’, and ultimately succeed at being themselves in a world too loud to hear your own voice screaming. I will share with you a single yet powerful formula for increasing your knowledge levels and ultimately becoming more of yourself than you already are.
How to build your Knowledge levels
Prioritize Reading Daily:
Many good traits successful people have was self taught as a necessity. So like me, you may have to consciously make strategic efforts to read daily. You can begin by setting a reading timetable. The idea of a reading timetable may sound scary, but just setting a phone reminder to read for one hour every morning could be a timetable. The fun part is that you can select whatever book appeals to you in learning this habit. It could be a novel, an article, a newspaper, a business book, and inspirational books or whatever that would possibly hold endearing interest.
To build anything, be it a business, a portfolio or a habit, the beginning will always be difficult. But when it’s a necessary priority, you just keep going until you perfect it. You can decide to make the process easier by trying out blogs, kindle and e-books. Mind you, taking the easy way out in the use of audio books and animated illustrations whilst they would get the information contained across and ultimately build knowledge, they may not aid your aim to teach yourself how to enjoy reading. And as is the law of life; it’ll get easier by the day until you fall in love with the idea of reading, and with time you realize that books can attract you anyway. And gradually It wouldn’t feel so boring anymore trying to build your knowledge levels. But remember, don’t be too hard on yourself, and start with something you have an interest in, because at the end of the day, we want to ensure hat your knowledge base and self relevance levels are in perfect lining with your individual nature.