I was recently challenged by a reader to define what I mean when I use the words “learn” or “learning”.
Here it is:
I’ll use the game of golf.
If you want to learn to play golf, you can go to a seminar, read a book about the history and etiquette of golf, watch a videotape of great golfing moments, and then you can say you know something about golf.
But have you really learned to play golf?
You can then buy and enjoy a great e-golf game, find a golf pro, take lessons, take a simulated swing on a simulated golf course, practice putting, slice and dice balls at the driving range all weekend.
After all this, you think you can do it, but have you really learned to play golf?
From your first tee shot on your first hole, it takes hours of adopting and adapting, alone and in a foursome, in all sorts of weather and conditions. You discover what you know and can do, swing all the clubs, ask all sorts of questions, fail and succeed, practice and practice some more, before you have really learned to play golf. Latest estimate I read for becoming really good at the game is 10,000 hours of practice, practice and more practice.
Real learning, then, is the state of being able to adopt and adapt what you learned, what you know and what you can do under a constantly varying set of new and different circumstances.
Just for the sake of learning, who knows what the word “GOLF” stands for?