Sunday, July 23, 2017

Learning new things, Curiosity, Laziness.

When I moved to India in 2009, I was exposed to a very different environment than I was used to, and with that came a different education system. My parents decided to put me in an international (IB) school as they thought I may not be able to cope with the Indian system of education. IB for younger grades (till 6th I believe) is called PYP (Primary Years Programme) and it is designed to train students to develop a lot of skills like time management, open-mindedness, and so on. The one skill it taught me (more than the others) was probably curiosity - to ask questions. I was already curious somewhere inside me, but it wasn't showing just yet. The curriculum and my teacher brought that out of me and ever since I have been as curious as ever (though I know when not to be as well). To be completely honest, it was my competitive side that got the curiosity out of me. I wanted that 4 (4 was the highest score) on my report card next to "Asks questions in class". In IB, "ask questions" means ask a hell lot of questions related to whatever is being taught.
This trait I have developed sometimes can be a problem, but it may be a good one. I usually have a handful of questions whenever I'm studying something new which makes me google it immediately because I become restless when I don't know something that I want to know. I believe this helps me get better grades sometimes because I clarify the concepts as much as I can.
The problem with me arises when curiosity arises along with laziness. It's an internal battle that goes on forever.

I love learning new stuff. It's always been in my nature. I love the idea of being knowledgeable. I've had teachers who know (what it seems like) everything. I look up to them so much because I aspire to be that; I want to be able to answer anything, even if it's in a brief manner when asked anything whether related to what I do or not. This goes well with my developed curiosity. 

Most of my childhood I knew only 3 languages (and could understand one more) but that was because I was lucky enough to be born in an environment where English is considered the primary language and each parent knew a different language (and one common one as well - the one I could only understand). When I moved to India, I learned Hindi: my 4th language. People sometimes seemed surprised if they showed any emotion when they realized that I knew 4 languages, but to me, it was the norm. "4 languages" is my norm. I decided that I wanted to learn Spanish too and so I installed an app to do so and it's going pretty decent as of now. As I mentioned earlier, I love learning so I really wanted to learn a new language.

When I have questions about the language I'm learning (grammar rules, or anything of that sort) I usually search them immediately or write them down...and then forget about it and forget where it was written (because I'm such a mess most of the times).
It's hard to keep up with "learning" when you are like me and have good days of productivity and then really bad days of not wanting to do anything. It's like being two people, almost. Or rather, it's like having a shoulder angel and devil, both very persuasive.

When I said the Spanish learning was going decent, I kind of lied. I still know my basics but I haven't revised in days and haven't even opened the app recently - it's a long streak of laziness rather than that of learning. My laziness does take a toll on my curiosity because, after a long period of time of being in this weird inactive non-learning phase, my interest starts to fade. Definitely not go away, just fade a little. I have to give myself that extra push (I guess what we call willpower) but laziness is that anchor keeping you from floating and the willpower is like the sword to cut the rope. You can probably see my recent obsession with Pirates of the Caribbean peaking through my writing.

So right now, I'm trying to get back into my active learning stage while writing this post laying on the bed, yawning. I hope that writing this post helps me actually see that this "lazy phase" is real and I don't like it. This post was kind of all over the place, I'm pretty sure. But I think putting into words what I've been denying should help me get back in my game and get the momentum started. Laziness, I don't think, will ever separate from me. I will always have urges to binge the entire day after a day of being super productive and learning a lot. But I think what I need to try to do is increase the days where I love what I'm doing and being curious compared to the lazy days. I just need to use my will power to keep that ratio high.

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