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The Three P's Needed to Learn Anything Well

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发表于 2017-9-3 15:37:57 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式
         I hear learners complain about how hard it is to learn English asoften as I am asked questions about the fastest and easiest ways of learningEnglish. Whenever faced with complaints and questions like those, I wouldalways suggest three English words starting with the letter 'P' as theguidelines. The three words are patience, perseverance and planning. If aperson can put these three words into practice, he or she can not only learnEnglish well but learn almost anything well in due course. For the sake ofconvenience, let's just take learning a foreign language like English as anexample.
       It nearly goes without saying how important patience is to one'ssuccess in learning anything but often times people just simply forget allabout this. I think that those who make the complaints and questions arerunning out of their patience. I also believe that most of them have learnedthe saying "Rome was not build in a day" and probably used it intheir writing or speech to persuade other people to be patient. However, whenit comes to themselves to exercise the virtue of being patient, most of thosepeople just can't keep their horse in rein. Come on, let's stop playing thetrick of double standards and try to be a good example of a patient personbefore teaching others about patience. Maybe we should learn from animals. Evencheetahs, the champion of speed on land, are observed to patiently follow theirpreys quietly before they catch the best chance to strike. In most cases, theirpatience will pay off. Similarly, some human hunters lie in the snow for hoursto catch the animal of their heart's desire. Like hunting a prey, learning alanguage is reaching a goal in the end but this task demands prolongedpatience. Don't be discouraged though. The dividends are worth all the effort.It is often the one with a calm and patient heart laughs last.
        To sustain one's patience, one should have sufficient perseverance.Without patience, one is only making hastes to see the results of one'sendeavor while without perseverance, one is in a hurry to give up and stoptrying at any moment. In that sense, the lack of perseverance is even worsethan the lack of patience. In many language learning forums, I often meetlearners who frequently jump from language to language but chances are they'llall end up as Jack of all trades and master of none. Those people must have notrealized the power of concentration of one's attention on a single goal. Whatleads their efforts to nothing is the lack of focus on what they are learning.To keep one's concentration on something, one must have a continuous supply ofthe power to hold on. Having been afflicted with the shortages of food andfreshwater for weeks on end, the crew on board the ship whose captain wasChristopher Columbus began to air their discontent with the severe conditionsthey had been suffering. They protested against Columbus and suggested thattheir explorative trip be discontinued and that the ship start her returnjourney. Nevertheless, determined to reach the destination of their journey,Columbus dismissed the suggestion and persuaded his crew to persevere till theywould all reach their destination and benefit from their journey. Had it notbeen for his perseverance, it would have been centuries later that anotherexplorer would reach the Americas and lay the foundations for the New World.
          Apart from patience and perseverance, anotherimportant quality of a successful learner is the ability to plan. To reachone's goal in learning, one cannot just remain patient and perseverant but haveno plans for how to get closer and closer to the goal. Making a reasonable planhelps establish one's goal and determine the steps towards it. A plan may breakthe ultimate goal into several smaller goals (sub-goals) in different stages.As a result, having arrived at one sub-goal, one gets clear where he or she hasgot in his or her journey toward the ultimate goal. Every time a sub-goal isaccomplished, one feels rewarded for his or her effort so far and will gainmore confidence in reaching the final goal. The more sub-goals are completed,the more one will grow in his or her patience and perseverance which willenable him or her to face greater challenges. This is very much like playing agame where one has to clear all the passes before reaching the final pass.Nowadays, in many language learning websites or apps, there is the function oftesting one's level of the language so that learners can test their learningachievements and know how they are progressing in their learning. Based on theresults of such tests, a learner may adjust their plans, shorteningor protracting some stages or skipping some altogether. A well-made planand a clear perception of how the plan is being carried out are very helpful incompleting the plan and attaining one's goal.
         To sum up, with language learning as an example, here Ibring to your attention the three qualities for a successful learner, which arepatience, perseverance and planning. Again, I would like to say that althoughthese three words are of course familiar to us all, few of us are reallyputting them into practice. Therefore, we need to remind ourselves of thosequalities from time to time in order to be really successful in our pursuit ofknowledge.
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