Whether you want to learn something new for your personal or professional life, it can be hard to know where to start. It used to be that learning a new skill meant burying your nose in a book, spending a few nights a week at night school or getting a private tutor. But the online learning movement has made the world of knowledge and self improvement literally at your fingertips.

However, if you want to be successful at learning new skills or information, it’s important to have a plan and stick with it. A lack of clarity or weak motivation is what leads many people to fail at their goals. To avoid this, you can try to learn with a friend, who will help keep you accountable and motivated. Also, self-reflecting on your progress can boost your confidence and fuel your desire to learn.

The process of learning is split into three parts, encoding, storage and retrieval. Encoding is the process of forming new memories, storage is the process of maintaining existing memories and retrieval is the act of accessing stored memory for use. Retrieval is an active process, and each time you retrieve a memory it becomes modified and more easily accessible in the future. This is because of the “cue-dependent” nature of memory, meaning that the more cues a memory has to evoke it, the stronger it will become. This is why it’s so important to constantly practice and review.

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