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By Kehinde Ajose

 

It was Olamide, the street wise Nigerian hip-hop artiste who coined the statement, “Are you a learner?” He used it in one of his hit singles, and it has become part of our daily conversation used to criticize a green horn or somebody who is just starting out in an endeavor. On the flip side, Are you a learner? It’s a clarion call ringing in the depths of our souls. It’s a question that leads to the voyage of inquiry, new discoveries, and knowledge acquisition. In the University of Life, learning is a compulsory course that mustn’t be underestimated. So many individuals overestimate their previous learning encounters and underestimate the place of continuous learning as regards their yearning (a combination of their passion, gifting and strengths).

 
The problem with most of our educational pursuits is that while our yearning is in one direction, we go to school to get a learning that goes in the opposite direction. We end up churning out graduates who are equipped without the requisite skills needed to succeed in the real world. Therefore they run the rat race. Even if you win in a rat race, you are still a rat. Our learning should marry our yearning in order to give birth to fulfillment and greatness. As a nation, the reason why we are still taking snail steps instead of giant strides is because we do not place a value on learning and we derive pleasure in learning the wrong things. A good number of young Nigerians will rather prefer reading the latest entertainment gossip rather than engaging themselves in learning encounters that will revitalize their personal pursuits.
According to Daniel Levitin, a Neurologist: “Ten thousand hours of practice(learning) is required to achieve the level of mastery associated with being a world class expert in anything. In study after study of composers, basketball players, fiction writers, ice skaters, concert pianists, chess players, master criminals, and what have you…this number comes up again and again.” If you have a strong literary yearning, try to find out about the greats in your field, how they excelled and how you can follow their footsteps because success leaves clues. It is pathetic that this generation places high premium on entertainment at the expense of empowering our minds. Little wonder, we have a vast amount of Tonto Dikes, Cossy Orjiakors entertainers who cannot grant incisive interviews to save their lives careers.

 

Ubong Essien, a notable motivational speaker puts it this way: “There are no more classifications of nations into 1st, 2nd, or 3rd worlds. All mankind and indeed every nation is now at par, one with another. And for good reasons – Information. The internet has put us all on equal footing.”
Stop complaining about your earning power or the results you generate, if you are not constantly falling in love with learning. Therefore, next time you are asked: “Are you a learner?” What will be your answer? Don’t dull! The future belongs to those whose learn, relearn and unlearn.

Kehinde Ajose is a Talent development strategist, publicist, and blogger.

 

 

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