Autodidacticism is the art of self-instruction in any field or discipline. It refers to the individualistic desire to submerge yourself willingly in a pool of knowledge and to broaden your learning horizons. So keep reading and find out how you can become an autodidact.
An autodidact seeks to sharpen his set of skills through a private and informal process of self-study where he researches, accumulates, engrosses and applies his new found insights.
An autodidact can be anyone: a seven year old girl watching Youtube videos on how to make a fairy wand for a costume party or a forty-five year old, recently single man looking up recipes on how to cook macaroni and cheese.
As a self-educator, an autodidact has full control of the structure and style of his instructive procedure. Of course, he is free to consult other experts in the avenue of his study and gain their advice if he encounters trials that he may require assistance with.
Autodidacticism takes on the utilization of multi-media instruments of erudition that can range from books, videos, hands-on learning, online courses and much more. It is not limited to one kind of learning tool.
The beauty of the Internet is that it has allowed the world to obtain real-time information its mere fingertips and equipped people with the means they need to expand their scope of knowledge. This also has popularized the concept of self-teaching.
If you have had a life long dream to learn how to play the guitar, you do not need to pay a guitar professional to direct you. All you have to do is invest in a guitar and look up a free course online.
This can be attributed to the fact that there is infinite digital information available. Remember you will have an advantage if you have a strong memory and are capable of recalling concepts. There are various ways to become a master of your chosen discipline.
Follow Your Heart
The first and foremost step in your learning journey is to identify the subject matter that you wish to become a self-taught guru in. Go crazy and choose the most random interests that you have been in love with since you were a young child. The best part about being an autodidact is that you do not have to be selective and can commit yourself to developing skills across multiple industry verticals. Casting a wide net in to the sea of knowledge will keep your fire of passion ignited. It will inspire you to venture further into the depths of its detail. After all, your motivation is the most vital guiding component in your voyage of self-mastery.
Devour with Love
After you have chosen what you wish to learn, it should be full speed ahead! Dig, dig and dig! Refer to a multitude of eclectic sources to hone your mind. Yes, the Internet is an effective, endless database of information but it is gain exposure to a human element as well. Wondering how to do that?
Expand your foundation of intended education by registering for workshops, seminars and short courses. It will serve as a great medium to network and to build your base of contacts as it may prove beneficial later down the line if you attempt to earn a livelihood from your newly acquired skills. You may find a mentor or a role model learn from. Perhaps, you can even shadow him once in a while and see what the average day in his life is like. This will give you an idea what to anticipate and help you establish realistic expectations. Finding like-minded people allow you to indulge in an exchange of information and comprehend other people’s perspectives on a similar path as you. It will help you realize that you are not alone in pursuing your passion and will keep you motivated to devour the knowledge surrounding you with a bit of love.
As we have stated that you can learn a lot from the Internet, you must be wondering what kind of sources are available. Do not worry, we will share some of our top recommendations with you.
- Digital Courses: The revolutionary phenomena labelled as distance learning has been around for some time now. Countless universities, colleges and schools have launched online where you can pay to become part of their classes. Accredited and renowned educational institutions such as John Hopkins, MIT and Berkeley offer online classes.
- Podcasts: If reading is not your thing, do not despair. In today’s day and age, we are fortunate to have a variety of tools at our hands that allow us to grow our knowledge. Utilize your listening skills and attend an audio course whilst having your lunch break simply by hearing it. You can do this anywhere: exercising, running, taking a walk or whilst cooking even.
- Ebooks: There is a plethora of free electronic books available online that you can print out and read whenever you have time. Similar to podcasts, you can read them whilst riding the subway to work or in the bathroom. It is completely up to you when you dedicate time as that is the flexibility you have when you are an autodidact.
- Online Encyclopaedias: Portals such as Wikipedia offer free access to useful articles where you can spend the whole day surfing and exploring content related to your industry of study. Make Wikipedia your browser’s home page and begin your day by spending half hour increasing your knowledge base.
Connect the Dots
We live in a complex world where everything is inter-connected. Endeavour to see the bigger picture at hand and find that common thread that links the different tools of learning that you are exposed too. Each fact that you consume will hold value.
However, how you choose to apply that knowledge in your field of study is what will make you a master of that discipline. Peter Drucker, the famous American business guru, once said that “innovation is nothing more that the re-application of existing technology.”