Unlearning: A Strategy for New Learning*
is the intention to let go of what we have already learned or acquired.
It is not about right or wrong. It is about being open to and exploring
new ideas and new and different ways of doing things. It can help you
become open to new skills, experiences, behaviors, and knowledge.
order to pick up a new skill, even if itís similar to something you
already can do, learn what makes it different. All of us repeat things
that worked in the past, even when they donít apply to the now.
Repeating isnít always a bad strategy, but when there is a significant
difference, the old approach holds you back.
refusing to unlearn old rules and old ways of doing things with the
thinking, ďthis is the way we have always done it,Ē you miss
learning opportunities and avoid moving forward.
are some ways to accelerate the unlearning of old judgments and
Learn to play again. Let go.
Be creative and innovative.
Take more risks. Seek
out new experiences. Do something that gets you outside your comfort
zone. These experiences invite the brain to consider things it might
not otherwise encounter.
Seek out experiences that help you not take yourself so seriously. Taming
the ego allows you to make mistakes, even fail, and still feel okay
Trust your unconscious. Our
unconscious mind, or intuitive self, has a lot to teach us. Any way
you can see beyond your ordinary consciousness opens you up to new
ways of seeing.
Ask for feedback. The
more people who can help you reflect on your behaviors, the greater
your chance to gain an accurate sense of how other people perceive you
and which actions to unlearn.
Examine your beliefs. Your
beliefs determine your behavior and itís difficult to act
inconsistently with your beliefs for very long. When you believe you
already know the right way to do things, everything else can seem
wrong. Why then would you want to unlearn what youíre currently
doing, let alone replace it with something else?
Individual Development Activities
published by CSP, Office of Civil Service Personal Management