“The more I read, the more I acquire, the more certain I am that I know nothing.”
You read an awesome article online and you’re sure it will help you with your fill-in-the-blank: diet, health, mental well-being, personal development, relationship, etc. Then, you scroll and forget about the article and miss an opportunity to create a change that would have added value to your life.
Can you apply all the content you read? No way. Can you apply a small portion of it and make a difference? Yes, absolutely!
When I’ve applied what I’ve learned via books, articles, conferences, podcasts, etc., that’s when the true gift of the content is realized.
Below are ways to apply what you learn to make a difference in your life.
Commit to taking action.
The faster you can take action, the better. The most impactful way to learn from content is to apply it immediately. If it’s not possible to apply right at that moment, make a note of what you’re learning and, then, write another note of how you’re going to put it into action. This second half is the key to your success. Using your experience, goals, and priorities to decide how you’re going to apply the knowledge will help motivate you to take action. Take it one step further and write a date of when you will have it done by. If you need accountability, tell, text, or email someone to hold yourself accountable.
Accept you’re not going to do everything.
When you’re learning something new and fresh that you enjoy, you get a shot of dopamine. As a result, you are likely to look for this type of content. That means every article, podcast, book, or other medium on the topic will engage you. You get to choose what you apply and what you don’t apply.
When I’m studying a particular type of content, I often read and listen to the same type of things from different perspectives. As I’m absorbing it, I make decisions on what I will do and what I’ll let go of.
The point here is to commit to taking some kind of action and not beat yourself up over what you’re not going to take action on.
When something energizes you and changes the way you think, ask yourself if it will help others. If the answer is yes, think about a way you can share it. Here are some ideas: summarize it and link to where you learned about it on social media, if you belong to a group (book club, mastermind, community group, church group, etc.) create something from what you learned, chat about it with a significant other or friend.
When I was leading a women’s group, I used the end of chapter exercises from a personal development book I read that I had meant to go back and do. This was a great opportunity because the group was interested in doing the exercises together.
Create a new habit.
When you learn about something you know will help you, you will excel when you create a habit out of it. For example, if you learn about how a gratitude practice will help bring more positivity in your life, commit to creating a habit. The same thing is true with exercise or healthy eating. Our habits dictate how we show up in life.
Using these steps will help you apply the tips and tricks you learn and create positive change in your life.