How to Learn Anything Faster: The Ultimate 2021 Guide

Module 1.03

How to learn anything faster?

Why learn faster?

Working full-time and trying to start an online business at the same time is hard work.

If you’ve only got a limited amount of time (like me) each week, you need to be able to learn fast.

I’ll break it down for you on how to learn anything faster in this ultimate 2021 guide.

Also, if you just keep reading and not taking action or executing a plan then you’re not working towards it.

The best way to learn is by doing and teaching others.

Break up activities into smaller, more manageable chunks.

What is the 80/20 rule? Also known as the Pareto principle.

If you haven’t heard of it, basically the 80/20 rule is that 80% of the results come from 20% of the effort.

But how do you determine what the 20% of the effort is that you need to get 80% of the results you are aiming for?

16 Steps: How to Learn Anything Faster:

  1. Take care of and prepare your body – you’ve probably heard healthy body, healthy mind before!
  2. Set measurable goals
  3. Eliminate distractions
  4. Find what learning methods work best for you
  5. Break up your goals and work into more manageable chunks
  6. Focus on one task at a time – stop trying to multi-task! (it is actually task switching and defocuses you)
  7. Skim read content
  8. Apply the 80/20 rule wherever possible
  9. Learn from others that are already doing well in the field you’re interested in (learn from their successes and failures)
  10. Take effective notes
  11. Use mind maps
  12. Review your notes on the new material in the evening, and then again the following morning after you’ve slept
  13. Put what you’ve learned into practice
  14. Repeat – practice makes perfect!
  15. Evaluate your results (against your measurable goals)
  16. Learn from your mistakes and improve

What is the Learning Pyramid?

The “learning pyramid” (sometimes referred to as the “cone of learning”) is a representation of different methods of retention stimulated from various types of learning.

I hear and I forget.

I see and I remember.

I do and I understand.

Confucius

Below is my interpretation of the Learning Pyramid.

Learning Pyramid by NucoTech
Learning Pyramid by NucoTech

Over at www.cleverism.com, they have a bit more of a detailed graphic in their blog The Ultimate Guide to Learning Anything Faster and you can also find plenty of other learning pyramid graphics from a quick Google Search.

However, I think the simple graphic I’ve made gives you a good idea that if you want to learn fast, you need to practice by doing and teaching others.

Another interesting find over on entrepreneur.com that I can reside with is giving up before or during “The Dip”.

You give up when your achievements or successes start to plateau or never even start to take off! You decide to call it quits because you’ve:

  1. Not serious enough about it
  2. Lose interest
  3. Got scared
  4. Run out of time or money

Do you want to forge your destiny and free yourself of the 9-5 grind building up someone else’s wealth?

Then don’t give up!

If you make a mistake, then learn from it and improve.

If you’ve been giving it a rock-hard go and at it for a reasonable amount of time, then you need to pivot.

  • Get some feedback from peers or experts
  • Do some research
  • Adjust your strategy
  • Potentially investigate paid courses that may accelerate your learning

You don’t need to become a pro, you can do that later once you can see some results from what you’ve already learned and started putting to action.

ONLINE CONTENT READING TIP: When reading content online, turn on Reader View (most smartphone and web browsers can do this – you may need an extension/plugin) – this hides all the ads and other distracting info and images and allows you to focus on the actual valuable content.

 

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My research and notes on this topic

Note: If I think something is already covered in an article I’ve already read, then I won’t note it down again for a new article (80/20 rule!)

Reading and Absorbing Information Faster

The Secrets To Reading Faster And Absorbing Information Better

  • Don’t read every word
  • Skim or speed read
  • Find headings that seem to interest you and then can read more of the detail
  • Take notes of overall points author is highlighting (usually they repeat throughout book/content)

Scientific Speed Reading: How to Read 300% Faster in 20 Minutes

  • Speed reading techniques by Timothy Ferris

Learning Anything Faster

The Ultimate Guide to Learning Anything Faster

  • “One skill you want to master in this day and age we live in, if you want to have an extraordinary life, is the ability to learn rapidly.” – Tony Robbins
  • Don’t reinvent the wheel
    • Get help from someone that has already learned it
    • Learn any shortcuts from those that have already mastered it
    • Anyone top in their field, see what actions they are taking and take the same actions they are taking and you can get the same results (this is called ‘modeling’)
  • Deconstruct the skill
    • Here’s that 80/20 rule!
    • What is the 20% of learning materials that will give 80% of the desired results?
    • Josh Kaufman – don’t need 10,000hrs to master a new skill – use the first 20hrs to learn the most important part of the skill to get the maximum amount of impact
    • Put new skills into action. Doing is learning.
    • “The first few hours of practicing a new skill always generate the most dramatic improvements in performance”
  • Stop multitasking
    • I think multitasking is a myth – It is called task switching.
    • Focus on one task and get it done
    • “Studies have shown that when an individual gets distracted, it takes an average of 25 minutes to return to the task at hand.”
  • Repeat, repeat, repeat
    • Practice makes perfect.
  • Seek immediate feedback
    • I’ve always thought the best way to improve is to seek feedback and then make changes to improve.
  • Go long
    • People usually quit because of:
      • running out of time
      • running out of money
      • getting scared
      • not serious about it
      • lose interest
    • Don’t quit before or during the dip

Six Brain Hacks To Learn Anything Faster

  • Teach someone else or just pretend to
  • Learn in short bursts of time
    • 30-50min for learning new material is ideal. Once done take a 5-10min break before starting another session.
  • Take notes by hand
    • I tend to agree with this, but we are living in the digital age…
    • Taking notes by hand also allows for sketching (brainstorm, ideas, diagrams, etc.)
    • For research, I think it’s just as efficient typing, as long as you’re disciplined enough not to just copy and paste information without comprehending it.
  • Mental spacing
    • Repeating learning over days or weeks will likely retain the information better
  • Take a study nap
    • Sleeping between learning has a twofold advantage – this could be learning something in the evening, sleeping for the night, and then learning it again in the morning.
  • Change it up
    • Finding an alternative way to learn a new skill means you may “actually learn more and faster than if you just keep practicing the same thing multiple times in a row”

How to Learn Faster

Check out the detail in the linked heading. Summary below.

  • Prepare Your Body
    • Get plenty of sleep
      • everyone is different but 7-8hrs is what I recommended for most adults
      • if you’re tired before 4-5 pm then you’re probably not getting enough sleep (or too much)
    • Eat enough food
    • Drink plenty of water
    • Get exercise
    • Teach your brain to learn
  • Learning to Learn
    • Pick and set a measurable goal
    • Research options for learning
    • Brainstorm criteria for learning
    • Trust your intuition
    • Refine your goal with research
    • Have someone show you that has done it already
    • Variety – choose what works best for you (internet, class, interview, mentor)
      • For me, my options are limited as I’m working full-time so my learning resources will be the internet / online articles, books, and videos
    • Experiment with learning
    • Evaluate your results and milestones
    • Refine your approach to your goals

The Best Ways to Absorb & Retain Information

  • Listen to audio recordings of yourself
  • Abbreviate words while taking notes – e.g., Corporation = Corp
  • Video record summary

10 Proven Ways to Learn Faster

  • Mostly already covered in the above notes from other articles

6 PROVEN STUDY TIPS TO RETAIN INFORMATION

  • Know when you’re most alert and attentive for optimal study time – are you a night owl or morning person?
  • Focus on one topic at a time
    • “Some topics require an extreme amount of focus to fully understand. Jumping from subject to subject will dilute your efforts and consequently limit your ability to retain the information. Avoid this habit at all costs.”

Making information stick: A step-by-step process to learning large amounts of content

  • Create handwritten notes and then later create a mind map from those notes. I think this is a great way for understanding a broad topic which then also has a whole bunch of subtopics (such as Internet Marketing).
  • Leave the mind map for 24hrs and then come back and review
  • Retrieval practice – covered a fair bit in the article – good for trying to retain information.

5 Hacks to Speed up the Learning Process

  • Break everything into small chunks

Try These 5 Steps For Learning New Skills Faster

  • Mostly already covered in the above notes from other articles

Learn Faster by Training Your Brain to Focus

  • Sound or silence – find what works for you best
  • Pomodoro technique
    • Decide on task
    • Eliminate the potential for distraction
    • Work for 25min
    • Take 2-5min break
    • Once completed this cycle 4 times, take a 15-30min break

How to Learn Faster: 30+ Strategies to Hack Your Brain

  • Preparation of learning something new is half of the game for learning something quicker – “to learn something quicker, you have to invest your time to plan out a strategy that beats conventional means.”
  • Growth mindset:
    • Learn for the sake of learning
    • Embrace challenges
    • See effort and obstacles as opportunities to grow
    • Learn from your mistakes and others’ criticism
    • Learn from your and other people’s successes

Learn Digital Marketing Faster

Apply the above techniques and strategies for learning faster. You can apply these to any field or topic.

An overview of Digital Marketing is covered in the below articles.

How to Learn Digital Marketing for (almost) Free in 6 Months

  • Pick your initial focus
  • Build your sandbox:
    • A place to apply what you’ve researched and learned – put it to practice
    • Sandbox criteria:
      • Low cost or free
      • Low stake (not afraid to fail or show your work)
      • Public

How to Learn Digital Marketing at Home and for Free (2021 Update)

  • Provides an overview on the below:
    • Search Engine Marketing
    • Content Marketing
    • Inbound Marketing
    • Social Media Marketing
    • Email Marketing
    • Digital Marketing Analytics Tools

 

If any of the information here has helped you or been useful, please let me know in the comments!

As part of Module 1, I’ll also be running through the below:


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