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INTELLECTUAL DISCIPLINE: How to Become a More Action-Oriented Person (& Escape the Mind-Trap of “Intelligence…”)

15 December 2010 No Comment


“I only read 2 books a year, because it takes me about 6 months to fully implement everything I learn from one…” ~ can’t recall

Bald man thinking african americanEarlier this week I did a post called, “The 5 STUPID THINGS Intelligent People Do (That Keep Them From Success…)” and it got a great response, so let’s follow that up with a more in-depth concept I’m developing called “Intellectual Discipline.”

Now I didn’t invent the term or anything, I’m just fleshing it out to give it more utility (rather then just sound hot).

———— Break it Down ————

I initially dropped this on the classic blog talk radio show, “Recommended Scrolls: Keys to Stepping Your Knowledge-Game Up” Listen:

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Since the show was me doing a series of book-reviews, this was an introductory precaution to not “O-D” just because I’d be mentioning a lot of hot titles…

african american woman in library with books

Basically, with intellectual discipline, you’re going from being a student to being a scientist: you’re going from being conceptual and research-oriented to being experimental and action-oriented.

One of the first things you’ll realize when you start approaching knowledge like this is that, before, you were “learning” far too much and (ironically), at the same time not REALLY learning anything at all.

The basic idea here is simple: DISCIPLINE yourself to not get so excited about the research, and FORCE yourself to constantly implement what you’re learning in order to get real-world feedback and results.

———— Some Examples ————

african american male reading in library1.| Always think action: whenever you’re reading or studying something, constantly ask yourself “How can I act on this?” and actually DO SO before you start studying again…

I don’t mean jump up right as you’re reading, but make an action-plan as you read and fulfill those tasks before you sit down to read again.

Some people even say, “For every hour of learning, spend TWO hours of implementation,” which I think is kind of thugged-out.

I don’t use an exact ratio myself, but I think in segments: I know I have to act on one chapter before I move on to the next, so I compartmentalize it like training sessions

2.) Read purposefully: before you read anything, remind yourself of what your purpose for reading it is before you even start, and let that be your “search engine” as you move through the pages. Create a mind-map if you have to in order to note down what you’re going to act on…

african american woman getting her study on

3.) Don’t get excited: if it applies, let go of the delusion that any book, video or audio product contains a “grand secret” or some “universal knowledge” that’ll make all of your problems go away.

In my blog post about dating a few months back, I said “stop idealizing women,” and I’m going to flip that here again and say STOP IDEALIZING INFORMATION. Remember that most of your learning is going to come from your own personal experience, so don’t let a simple title (or anyone who sells information) get you hyped-up.

———— Some Last Thoughts ————

Remember that we’re living in the digital age…

african american woman using a laptopNot only can we deceive ourselves into thinking that consuming information is the same as actual know-how, we also have UNLIMITED ACCESS to said information in the first place. That’s what makes intellectual discipline so critical now more then ever.

Once you get into this habit – the habit of orienting yourself towards gaining skills, not gathering information – you lose your dependence on all of the new “teachers,” “gurus,” “life coaches,” “consultants” and “experts,” coming to theaters near you.

(Notice how they’ve been popping up all over the place??? It’s going to be getting even worse…trust me.)

learn you true self self-help new age fraud

They’re not going to like this: what I’m trying to put you on here is enough to put a lot of people out of business. Think about it…

(I’m not saying that anyone who has anything to teach is untrustworthy, just that feeling like you need THEIR information to take YOUR life to the next level is unhealthy.)

Lastly, Intellectual Discipline will also give you an appreciation for the depth and complexity of what you do choose study (provided it’s quality information). It’ll literally take you, your life and your respect for learning to an entirely new level…

Remember, always think action… In fact, leave me a comment below letting me know how you’re going to use THIS…


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