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Thread: Roadblocks to Learning

  1. #1
    darkened dreams Array labyrinthine's Avatar
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    Apr 2007
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    Default Roadblocks to Learning

    What are some of the most significant ways a person's ability to learn becomes stunted? What are the ways to overcome these.

    It seems like an emphasis on self, whether it be arrogance or loathing can quickly limit the ability to learn. When the focus is ego-centered, then any information coming in is bent and twisted to fit that underlying assumption. This appears to affect the personality types equally, or at least it is clearly represented in all types, so the issue could be much deeper and more universal than just F or T or whatever. The issue of arrogance as a roadblock to learning is something I have yet to figure out how to overcome. Sometimes there will be a young student with potential and drive, but their assumptions of already knowing enough slows, even stops, their ability to progress. How to break through that shell of assumption? Steering too far in the other direction can cause the person to be too demoralized to learn, assuming it is beyond them and hopeless. These deepest assumptions about self are easily clouded in the mind to the point that the person is completely unaware and sees him/herself as being objective. Arrogance is especially tough in that regard, or sometimes it is assumed to be a strength. How can a person learn if they think they already know? My instinct is to cater to the individual who doesn't have enough confidence to learn, so I tend to start by being encouraging, even generous to instill that confidence. I'm not convinced this works on the arrogant mind, and yet I end up using that tactic more than I probably should because I just don't know how else to approach it. It seems to take a combination of humility and confidence to accept what one doesn't know, but to maintain hope that one can come to know.

    There are other issues like fear and anger that stunt learning. What are your thoughts? If you have any solutions or suggestions, those are worth including here.
    The first man to raise a fist is the man who's run out of ideas. H.G. WELLS
    The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. FEYNMAN

    If this is monkey pee, you're on your own.SCULLY

  2. #2
    Arcesso pulli gingerios! Array Eldanen's Avatar
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    Apr 2007


    How come some of the most intelligent and creative people seem to be extremely egotistical and/or assholes?

    I think that in some cases egotism, or focus on the self, can be a roadblock to learning. Although, it seems to me that it can also drive one toward introspection and observation, leading to innovations and creative ideas.

    All emotions, I believe, can be valuable when it comes to learning, although it depends on the subject matter and what goal one is trying to reach. If one is trying to attain a meditative state, strong emotions like fear and anger are obviously going to be detrimental.

    I believe that the greatest block to learning something new is the assumption that one already knows enough, or that one knows everything. Also, old knowledge can block new knowledge. There is a psychological term for this.

    Aha! I found it: proactive inhibition.

  3. #3
    ish red no longer *sad* Array nightning's Avatar
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    Apr 2007


    Very true. Prejudgment and notion of superiority hurts learning. Especially the notion where we think we know what's best but we really don't. I know sometimes I've gotten so used to doing things one way that I never thought of other ways of doing the same thing. And when somebody else showed me a different, but more efficient approach, my first reaction to it is annoyance and resistance.

    On the opposite end, you have despair. Believe of self inadequacy that makes you feel as if no matter how hard you try you couldn't do it. So why bother trying mentality.

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