What do you think of when you think about lifelong learning? Does it sounds like you need to go to college for the rest of your life? Does is sound like you need to have your nose in a book 24/7? What does “lifelong learning” mean?
According to Wikipedia, the definition of lifelong learning is as follows: “Lifelong learning is the ongoing, voluntary, and self-motivated pursuit of knowledge for either personal or professional reasons. Therefore, it not only enhances social inclusion, active citizenship, and personal development, but also self-sustainability, as well as competitiveness and employability.”
Lifelong learning is something that we choose to do. We choose to do it for professional reasons or for personal reasons. We decide whether we want to learn through formal instruction or through informal personal development. We decide whether we want to focus on achieving a good career through formal instruction where we can maximize our potential to earn more and maybe even become more successful in our chosen career. Or we choose to focus on personal development such as maybe learning a new skill or hobby, etc.
The Government of BC says that lifelong learning means “Keeping our minds active is equally as important as keeping our bodies physically active. Lifelong learning means that we continue to learn new skills and gain knowledge throughout our lifetimes – an important part of healthy, active aging. By taking a class or attending a workshop, we not only learn new things, but we also:
- meet new people,
- share ideas,
- develop our thinking skills, and;
- improve our memories.
The fact is, learning is so important to our overall health and development. It gives us options in life. You are never too old to learn a new skill.
Learning happens all the time, but deciding to be a lifelong learner means that you are taking a conscious step to further your personal or professional development. Which one will you choose?
Wikipedia. Lifelong learning: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lifelong_learning
Government of BC. Education and Lifelong Learning. http://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/family-social-supports/seniors/health-safety/active-aging/education-and-lifelong-learning