“Measure the quality of your learning by what you can imagine, not by what you can remember.”
― from Learning Secrets
Lincoln Stoller, PhD, 2019. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International license (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) www.mindstrengthbalance.com
Psychology, Growth, and Innovation
In the psychology, growth, and innovation business, learning is the common element, but most people put learning behind them. That’s partly because school is a nightmare, and partly because we’re taught tunnel vision. Few realize the solution to their problems lies in transformation, not acquisition. Your future potential lies in doing things differently, not doing more of the same.
People’s stories of their positive school years sound nightmarish to me: growing up under a benevolent dictatorship of protection and entertainment. That’s a prison; it’s not good. They didn’t have adventures, take risks, or learn how to learn. They saw neither lies or truth, and you must see both in order to discriminate between them.
The Back Story
Daniel joined my Business Psychology Meetup group and I noticed he was in the gaming business, an interest we share. He focused on providing marketing services, I needed them, so we decided to swap services: he expanding my market and me shrinking his head… but not really. The first thing he told me about my book The Learning Project was that I should give it away .
Why do they call it “head shrinking” anyway? Must be some reference to voodoo, though voodoo never shrunk heads, it was the Jivaro tribe in the Amazon who did that. Funny, I’ve spent some time with them in the jungles of Ecuador and nobody said anything about shrinking heads. Had I asked, they might have sold me one. Now, I’m a “headshrinker,” too!
The Learning Project
I liked Dan’s idea of integrating The Learning Project with my work. It’s a resource that’s easy to scan, but not to summarize. The Learning Project’s thirty-five interviews cover four generations of experience and one thousand years of history. One reader wrote, “I’ve never read a book like this.” It’s a book of secrets too big for most readers to digest.
One of the mantras of marketing is to offer what people want. A “book unlike any other,” covering all the aspects, isn’t a good introduction to how I think. Giving it away would not unlock its secrets. I came to the obvious conclusion that I need to digest it for them; I need to write another book. And I’ll take Dan’s suggestion and title the new book Learning Secrets.
After a few days of confusion my gut agreed to the project. I sketched an outline, wrote a chapter, trashed the first outline and wrote another. LearningSecrets seems to be writing itself, and my outlines are playing catch-up.
“The path of knowledge is a forced one. In order to learn we must be spurred, and in the absence of someone to spur us we must spur ourselves. In the path of knowledge we are always fighting something, avoiding something, preparing for something; and that something is always inexplicable, greater, more powerful than us”
— Carlos Castaneda
Learning Secrets extracts lessons from The Learning Project putting them into one voice. These “secrets” are highlighted and linked back to The Learning Project speaker who voiced them. Learning Secrets is an exploration of psychology, not politics, program, or method; a book of secrets of how to be.
I’ve started a Learning Secrets Email Sequence separate from this newsletter. Every Wednesday I send a “secret” with a paragraph of explanation. The secrets are “evergreen,” sound bitten, and serialized. They’ll constitute a slim and direct volume that I can offer, advertise, and give away for free.
I’m spinning off secrets as I write, and I’m aiming to include one hundred so that the book will be small, and inexpensive to print and mail. The Learning Secrets emails are starting now. I will have the book published by the end of September.