A week ago, when I saw a video on Fusion.net about Adilyn Malcolm, I encountered a small paradigm shift.
Watching 12-year-old Adilyn dancing on a pro-level, and listening to hear casually speak about how she discovered her passion “Dubstep-dancing” through watching a video on the internet, I couldn’t believe, that she was only practicing for 8 months. To hack learning and use “Webucation” as her primary tool seemed to be the most natural thing for her.
At first I thought, “Cool, I can relate!”
Seeing the Crazy Russian Climbers Video on Youtube a couple of years back is what made me search the Internet for a nearby Parkour community. But I was missing out on the second step – I didn’t know I could hack learning, using more than the methods my teachers have taught me.
“I Wasn’t Learning As Quickly As I could Have.”
For at least two years I was mainly relying on the teachings of those around me.
I was fortunate enough to be practicing with Freerunners who already had taught themselves in great effort, so I could avoid some detours the generations before me had made, but I wasn’t nearly learning as quick as I could have.
Here I quickly want to slip in, that taking those detours has value in itself. After all I believe we should be practising because it feels like the right thing to do – because it feels like an expression of who we are. And not because we solely aspire to become world-champions. But I’ll leave that for another post.
There Are 6 Key-Points That Teach You How To Use “Webucation”.
Webucating ourselves means using the possibilities of the internet as “Online Continuing Education” as Peter Drucker said on Forbes.com.
That includes teaching ourselves in our own pace, with the ever growing amount of curated and evaluated information accessible for everyone with an internet connection.
For centuries we have been trusting the expertise of our masters and Sensei’s, but today it is, that we are exposed to the knowledge of all the greatest minds of our history. We don’t have one Guru, but we have all of them.
We can hack learning, meaning embracing the new opportunities of the internet age, and the young generation is showing us how.
Coming out of that small paradigm-shift, I tried to sum up the co-related points that I have overlooked in the past.
Understand These 6 Key-Points To Use The Potential Of “Webucation” – And Hack Learning to Improve Yourself Faster.
1. EXPOSURE – FINDING YOUR PASSION
Never before were we exposed to so many different arts and crafts. This is an incredible advantage. Imagine you are a super talented mover and generally enjoy dancing to the rhythm, but no matter what you do “Swing” just doesn’t do it for you. Unfortunately you’re living in America in the 1920s and you basically don’t have a choice to dance to anything else.
It’s only almost a century later that today you can discover “Electro-Swing”, these beats feel more like it, and you become a 120-year-old champion dancer.
If you are not fully satisfied, if you didn’t find your true passion yet – keep searching!
Use the richness and variety of today’s age. You might be very close to becoming the next Michael Jackson, or Van Gogh, or Andrea Catozzi.
Not only do you have idols to look up to, but you have mentors who give away their knowledge freely – in any art, language, sport and culture.
That’s huuuuge. If you took enough time exploring the web for that particular skill that inspires you today – it could just be Pen Spinning – then start searching for tutorials and How To videos.
Bear with me for the next points – after reading these, and watching the video below, you can start to master a new skill efficiently, today!
3. REWATCHING, REWINDING, SLOWMOTION AND PAUSING
Did you ever try to learn a move from your movement-teacher or friend, and you’ve asked him if he can repeat the move in Slowmotion for you?
BUT – today even Youtube has a Slowmotion-Function. (For the non-german speaking friends – “Geschwindigkeit” means “speed”, and you can decrease it to one fourth of the original speed on nearly every new Youtube video.)
Here is more great news:
We learn by watching.
I mean, just by watching. You look up Michael Guthries latest Quad Cork and while you’re right leg is twitching in excitement – the mirror neurons in your brain firing up actually help you to develop your form for your own attempt. Have a look at this TedTalk if you want to find out more.
Spending a decent amount of time observing the skill you’re trying to attain, will help you to perform them later on with more ease.
4. LEARN IN YOUR OWN PACE
Other than in most of today’s schools, Webucation allows for your own learning pace.
Maybe you’d have to spend a few more hours on a very basic step, but the teacher’s curriculum doesn’t allow for more time.
Trying to do a pirouette with your partner in a waltz while staying in rhythm becomes an impossibility, if you can’t perform the basic step. You’re likely to drop out of the course – and every further opportunity to discover wether this could have inflamed the passion for a lifetime is lost.
5. FLOW – SPEND MORE TIME IN YOUR LALA-LAND
As Adilyn explains in the video below, not only did she spend countless hours watching and practicing the single moves, but she also lets go during practice.
“Sometimes you can transfer one move to another, like, you just go with the flow… and it’s kinda weird, because I’m just in my Lala-Land” – Adilyn Malcolm
To attain mastery and freedom in any skill, you don’t want to “just do what a teacher once taught you”. You will want to find yourself in the practice itself. There is the time, where you just have to “be in the zone”. Feel, more than you think. Don’t practice with a goal. Just do.
But keep the camera rolling!
If you record your movement sessions, you can later look back at those moments where you zoned out, which felt perfect. These are the moments which you are training for.
Or you can correct your techniques by comparing your movements on tape, to those of your role models. Although this is more part of point 3 of this list.
6. SHARE YOUR OWN EXPERIENCES
By this, I don’t mean for you to brag about your accomplishments.
If you learned something of value for you, you will automatically feel like you will want to share this shortcut, this life-hack you found out about. Or maybe you just want to share your approval for a method someone else has come up with.
However, this is the final and a vital step for you to not land on a plateau. By sharing your experiences either with like-minded people, with your students or your online audience, once more you become a student, and you are challenging yourself on the next step of mastery:
becoming a Sensei.
Now I want to leave you to these two girls, who already paved your way by being great examples of
How to Follow and Find Your Passion Using Webucation:
Of course Mastery itself is subject to various definitions – and I’m not trying to make a point trying to learn new skills to show off, but I wanted to highlight, that through today’s changing times, we have to re-think our previous methods.
And we have to re-evaluate if some of what is being taught, is out-dated and if there are better ways to learn.
I leave this choice up to You – what do you think?
The featured image is property of Fusion.net, who created the video about Adilyn.