Why You Should Be a Lifelong Learner

Key Takeaways

  • Graduating from high school, college, or other institution isn’t the pinnacle of learning.
  • Real learning takes place when we get into the real world.
  • If you’re a lifelong learner, you not only improve yourself, but foster positive impact in the world.

It’s likely that, somewhere in your home—maybe on a wall, maybe in a box in the attic—you have a certificate (or two, or three), showing that you gave up years of your freedom in return for A’s, B’s, or C’s. These certificates verify your ability to pass a number of tests. While important (and often quite costly!), these certificates are actually just a single entry point to get out in the world.

The real learning takes place in the real world. Seth Godin recently wrote a piece on this topic, “How Much is That Piece of Paper in the Window?” In it, he discusses four major points around learning. These points make up the characteristics of lifelong learners.

First off, lifelong learners are self-directed. They learn something new on a regular basis and they put that knowledge to use to make changes in their lives.

Lifelong learning is voluntary. You don’t have to be in a classroom, taking required classes to get a degree. You don’t have to be seated in front of an instructor, doing things you don’t want to do. Instead, you can pick and choose to learn about real-world topics to help you make an impact in an area you’re interested in.

There is always access to lifelong learning; we are surrounded by it. With today’s technology, we have the ability to access so much more information than we ever had before. We can learn things very quickly, because learning is always available and we can, in turn, use it to make an impact on ourselves and others in the world.

Finally, learning is about how we see the world. When we learn, it changes the way we view things. Sometimes it clarifies things for us; other times, it raises more questions—but it always expands how we’re thinking.

Being a lifelong learner is a critical component to being a high performer. Change is occurring faster and faster. What you knew just a few short years ago may now be obsolete. Without continuous learning, you fall further and further behind, making it difficult to have that positive impact on the world. No matter the subject or area of interest, if you’re focused on lifelong learning, you’ll bring value to what you do. Until next time, enjoy.


Gary Klaben is in our Glenview, IL office and serves our clients who are now located all over the country. He has over 30 years of experience and is the author of Changing the Conversation, Wealth of Everything and co-author of The Business BattlefieldWhether advising his clients, mentoring his team, or coaching entrepreneurs, he is always simplifying complexity and motivating others to take the next action that’s right for them.

Learn more about TransformingWealth™ , our proprietary approach designed to get your arms around the big picture, so you can make informed financial decisions. Ask Gary about Coyle’s TransformingWealth Preview Meeting and schedule a complimentary consultation and start living the Good Life Managed Well™.
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All information is from sources deemed reliable, but no warranty is made to its accuracy or completeness.   This material is being provided for informational or educational purposes only, and does not take into account the investment objectives or financial situation of any client or prospective client.  The information is not intended as investment advice, and is not a recommendation to buy, sell, or invest in any particular investment or market segment.  Those seeking information regarding their particular investment needs should contact a financial professional.  Coyle, our employees, or our clients, may or may not be invested in any individual securities or market segments discussed in this material.  The opinions expressed were current as of the date of posting, but are subject to change without notice due to market, political, or economic conditions.

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