How the ABL Principle Will Change Your Life

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At age 13, a boy named Henry had a high curiosity with mechanics. So high in fact, that he completely took apart the watch his Father gave him. Henry then went on to meticulously observe and reassemble the watch back to working order.

Henry became a life-long learner of mechanics from that day forward. In fact, you probably know him by the name of Henry Ford. One of Henry’s life principles was to always be learning.

Later in life he was known for saying, “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.”

The ABL Principle is just a simple acronym that I have created to stand for: Always Be Learning. If there is one thing you can be certain of in a world of uncertainty, it is this: change is coming.

Those who are constantly upgrading their skills and expecting change…survive. While others who get too comfortable, get left behind.

4 Reasons Why Should You Become a Life-long Learner

In the past 12 months, I have personally invested close to $3000 in courses and conferences. I intentionally choose to not rest in yesterday’s successes in my blog or my business.

As a result, I’ve become a more resourceful person, my business has tripled this year in growth/revenue, and I’m a more connected person.

Here are at least 4 reasons why you should consider becoming a life-long learner:

1. Fully develop your talents and abilities

Recently someone asked me if I had ever written any blog posts on a particular topic. This caused me to dive deep into my archives. I pulled up a few old blog posts from a few years ago and I was embarrassed.

While I am still not where I want to be as a writer, I can see how much I have grown over the years. You should be able to say the same about your core talents and abilities.

2. More easily adapt to change

Life-long learners have an advantage in today’s economy. They are able to make the adjustment where and when it needs to happen.

When you are a life-long learner, you can more easily:

  • Switch careers when a particular industry dries up
  • Make shifts in your business as demand changes
  • Stay on top of your industry as an expert

3. Become the “go to” person (resourceful person)

One of the best ways to increase your influence is by being the most resourceful person you know. Be the biggest “giver” in any relationship. Help others without expecting anything in return. Go to forums in your niche and help others overcome challenges. Become a “go to” person.

4. Meet people who share your interests

One of my favorite quotes comes from Charlie “Tremendous” Jones, who often said: “You will be the same person a year from now except for the books you read and the people you meet.”

While I still love reading books, I think there is a broader understanding of that statement. In today’s high-tech culture, we can say:

“You’ll be the same person a year from now, except for the things you learn and the people you meet.”

6 thoughts on “How the ABL Principle Will Change Your Life”

  1. I think learning can be driven by:

    > Necessity, but that comes and goes.

    > Fear, but it can leave a sour taste. And resulting stress can hurt you.

    > Mastery: the challenge and satisfaction of mastering any skill, whether it’s chess or carpentry or speaking Chinese.

    However, I like to believe the most robust and persistent learning is driven by curiosity. In fact, you could say that while necessity, fear and mastery are are all mothers of invention, curiosity may be the jewel in the crown. (Mixed metaphor? Ah, well.)

    Scientists, of course, thrive on curiosity. They find satisfaction when experiment proves them right — but are downright exhilarated when proven wrong. Their thrill comes from stumbling across the unexpected: it reveals how much more we have to learn, and opens new avenues to explore. (Case in point: this past spring, top scientists sounded disappointed when the long-sought Higgs Boson turned out to be pretty much what theory predicted.)

    Curiosity also drives the best of journalism. And, of course, blogging.

    “The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.” —Dorothy Parker

  2. Imagine if this principal of life-long learning were talked about like this in school. I’m sure it would inspire and better prepare young people for lifes challenges! Great post Jonathan!

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