10 Effective Tips to Help you with Self-Education

In the age of YouTube and Google almost anything you want to know or learn is now easily accessible and only a click away. Most people now spend the vast majority of their days on their phones, laptops/PC’s or tablets both for work and entertainment purposes. However are you utilising and learning new skills through all the tools available?

With the development of new technologies, laws, trends and increasing competition it is vital to be able to adapt to these changes to ensure you remain “on top of your game” and to be in the know of what is happening within your industry. Learning isn’t always easy. Some people thoroughly enjoy it whilst others don’t. It is crucial to be aware that independent learning can be difficult which is why it requires a great deal of motivation, commitment and discipline. Nevertheless, it is a challenge that anyone can overcome and the key to being successful with self-educating is making learning a habit. Below are 10 effective tips on what you can do to help your independent learning journey

1. Set goals with rewards

Setting daily or weekly goals are important it helps you stay organised and rewarding yourself will certainly encourage you to accomplish all targets which you set for yourself.

2. Study successful people

If you’re an aspiring fashion designer, carry out research to find out how established designers became successful. Reading autobiographies, watching documentaries and interviews are insightful and inspiring. Key points to take from your research is how they got started, how they overcame setbacks, their failures and how they got to where they are today.

3. Read books and articles

Reading is one of the easiest ways to learn. There are a range of books to help such as self-help books as well as textbooks that have a focus on specific topics such as branding, social media marketing and pattern cutting.

4. Watch webinars and listen to podcasts

Webinars and podcasts are great as you have the option to learn on the go and also listen and make notes. This point is good for anyone who doesn’t particularly enjoy reading all the time.

5. Free educational resources

There are many free online courses which specialise in a range of topics from coding to graphic design and then there is YouTube a great platform with tons of easy tutorials and lessons. In addition to e-courses and YouTube, there are various downloadable e-guides which contain practical information.

6. Attend events

Events are great, be strategic! Check out who will be on the panel or delivering the workshop, analyse the description of the event, ask yourself is it worth your time? If you attend the event what will you get out of it, will you learn something new? If the event ticks all boxes, go for it and sign up!

7. Use apps

There are many resourceful organising and planning apps that help you to keep things structured and in order. Evernote is fantastic for making notes on the go and the great thing is that you can continue your notes on your laptop or PC if you decide to. Google Drive allows you to create folders, word documents, spreadsheets and presentations, both on the go and via your laptop/PC, similar to Evernote there is also the option to create documents whilst being offline. Have you ever come across an article or video but can’t read or watch it then and there? This is where Pocket comes in handy, simply just save it directly from your browser to the app.

8. Create an environment for studying

As mentioned previously in this article independent learning can be distracting so it is important to create an environment where you can actually focus and get work done. Everyone has their own preferences on how they learn some like quiet zones, others require music for productivity. There are many options such as co working spaces, coffee shops, a quiet area in your house or your local library.

9. Talk to people

You can learn so much by simply holding a conversation with a specialist from your industry and and asking them questions. It’s simple yet, very effective!

10. Join groups and professional networks

Facebook and LinkedIn are two great platforms. They have many groups that people create for training, brainstorming, networking purposes and swapping skills. If you haven’t found a group that suits you, consider creating your own.

Thank you for reading! Please feel free to share your tips below!

Written by Frederica Boateng