Lifelong learning is a competitive advantage.

But contrary to what you’ve been told, lifelong learners are built, not born.

THREAD: 20 lifelong learning habits you can start developing today.

Stimulate Dynamically

The mind is a muscle - it needs to be stimulated dynamically to continue to grow.

Don’t rely on one “exercise” - develop a menu of options.

Write, read, listen, watch. Solve puzzles, play games. Enjoy it!

Stimulate dynamically, learn dynamically.
Build Learning Circles

The most powerful learning is communal, not individual.

Build learning circles with other intellectually curious minds.

Engage regularly with no set intention or goal.

Community is everything. Embrace it.
Keep Asking Why

“Why?” is the most useful tool in our learning toolkit.

But somewhere along the line, we are told to stop asking why and just accept “facts” as we are told them.

Reject the norm.

If you want to understand the world, take a cue from our kids - keep asking why!
Adopt a Process Orientation

Prioritize process.

Learn for the sake of learning, not always for a specific goal.

When you prioritize process, you become flexible in where you are headed.

Life is a winding, confusing journey - forward progress is all that matters.
Become a Polymath

A polymath is a person with wide-ranging, multi-disciplinary knowledge.

Lifelong learners tend to be polymaths - their curiosity naturally leads to knowledge accumulation in a variety of disciplines.

Learn both horizontally and vertically. Become a polymath.
Build a Learning Engine

The “learning engine” is at the core of every lifelong learner.

It is comprised of all the learning “inputs” regularly consumed - books, newsletters, podcasts, videos, etc.

The internet has opened access to it all.

Build an unstoppable learning engine.
Avoid Noise Bottlenecks

Consuming more does not equate to knowing more.

As you consume more data, you may find the noise-to-signal ratio increases (a classic @nntaleb “noise bottleneck” appears).

Consume less, but consume intelligently.

More signal, less noise.
Embrace All Types of Learning

There are two types of learning: surface and deep.

Surface learning is quick and easy.

Deep learning is more challenging. It requires a willingness to slow down and let ideas mature in the mind.

Lifelong learners embrace both.
Seek Mentors & Coaches

“If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.”

You can’t do it alone. Seek out mentors and coaches to help you on your journey.

Never be afraid to ask.

You’ll be amazed by the kindness of strangers and their willingness to help.
Embrace Failures

Lifelong learners recognize that failures are learning opportunities.

They don’t fear them. They embrace them.

It’s easier said than done. Failures are painful - physically and emotionally.

But stay the course and you’ll find learning on the other side.
Follow Your Curiosity

When you have a spark of curiosity, follow it.

Moments of pure, unadulterated curiosity are fleeting, so you have to prioritize them when they come.

Seek out curiosity-inducing content (like my Curiosity Chronicle newsletter!).
Become a Teacher

Teaching is often the most powerful path to learning.

The Feynman Technique (explained below) is a foundational mental model for unlocking learning and growth through teaching.

Use it!

If you want to learn, teach.
Take Breaks

Humans were not made for constant motion.

Learn to sprint, then rest.

Taking breaks can be the easiest, most effective unlock for learning and growth.

If you want to learn to grow, first learn to rest.
Learn from Strangers

Every conversation with a stranger is an opportunity to learn something new.

Be present in every conversation with everyone you meet.

You never know what might come of it.
Seek a Stimulating Job

Try to find a job that is intellectually stimulating.

I know this is a luxury - if you are lucky enough, take advantage.

P.S. I want to help. Check out my job board for interesting roles at companies that believe in open access.
Change Your Mind

Lifelong learners are always willing to change their mind.

Believe something to be true? Ok, but be sure to open your mind to counterarguments.

Stubborn refusal to acknowledge alternative perspectives stalls progress.

Strive for strong opinions, weakly held.
Embrace Novel Formats

2020 was a tough year, but it did bring an upswell of novel learning formats.

Cohort-based courses - which foster community! - are a great innovation.

Cool Example: Ascend - a program for women looking to accelerate their careers.
Practice Mindfulness

A healthy mind is a powerful mind.

Set aside time for mindfulness.

Practice meditation - start with 5 minutes a day and build up from there. There are plenty of great apps to help you get started.

With a healthy mind, anything is possible.
School as the Starting Line

All lifelong learners recognize that school is nothing but the starting line of our true education.

Once you internalize this, you’ll start doing things differently.
Play the Long Game

The greatest riches in life - personal or professional - come from compound interest.

But it takes time. Lots of time.

Knowledge is no different - it compounds.

So lifelong learners play the long game. Let the magical power of compounding work for you.
So those are 20 lifelong learning habits you can start developing today.

What are some that I am missing?

If you enjoyed this, follow me for more threads on business, mental models, and life. You can find all of my threads in the meta-thread below.
And if you’re interested in building out your learning engine and surfacing curiosity inducing content every single week, subscribe to my newsletter for more!

More from Sahil Bloom

THREAD: With #silversqueeze trending on Twitter, it appears that this week's market spectacle may well be in the silver market.

A perfect moment for a thread on the Hunt Brothers and their alleged attempt to corner the silver market...

1/ First, let's set the stage.

The Hunt Brothers - Nelson Bunker Hunt, William Herbert Hunt, and Lamar Hunt - were the sons of Texas tycoon H.L. Hunt.

H.L. Hunt had amassed a billion-dollar fortune in the oil industry.

He died in 1974 and left that fortune to his family.

2/ After H.L.'s passing, the Hunt Brothers had taken over the family holdings and successfully managed to expand the Hunt empire.

By the late 1970s, the family's fortune was estimated to be ~$5 billion.

In the financial world, the Hunt name was as good as gold (or silver!).

3/ But the 1970s were a turbulent time in America.

Following the oil crisis of the early 1970s, the U.S. had entered a period of stagflation - a dire macroeconomic condition characterized by high inflation, low growth, and high unemployment.

4/ The Hunt Brothers - particularly Nelson Bunker and William Herbert - believed that the inflationary environment would persist and destroy the value of their family's holdings.

To hedge this risk, they turned to silver.

They began buying the metal at ~$3 per ounce in 1973.

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Following @BAUDEGS I have experienced hateful and propagandist tweets time after time. I have been shocked that an academic community would be so reckless with their publications. So I did some research.
The question is:
Is this an official account for Bahcesehir Uni (Bau)?

Bahcesehir Uni, BAU has an official website which links to their social media, leading to their Twitter account @Bahcesehir

BAU’s official Twitter account

BAU has many departments, which all have separate accounts. Nowhere among them did I find @BAUDEGS
@BAUOrganization @ApplyBAU @adayBAU @BAUAlumniCenter @bahcesehirfbe @baufens @CyprusBau @bauiisbf @bauglobal @bahcesehirebe @BAUintBatumi @BAUiletisim @BAUSaglik @bauebf @TIPBAU

Nowhere among them was @BAUDEGS to find