Endurance Learning

“Judge each day by the seeds you plant, not the harvest you reap”

Teaching your child to ride on a bicycle is very fulfilling, but can also be frustrating to both you and your child. This is a learning path with very little shortcuts. Your child can’t just nod and say “I got you”. She actually needs to get on that bike and ride. And stop. And not fall… and falling hurts… And pulling through those falls require, sometimes for the first time in your child’s adult life, to trust you that your teaching will work. That it’s ok that they fell, and that although it seems hard and painful, the outcome will be worth it. “Remeber now that it’s hard”, I told my son when teaching him to ride his bike, “remember now, and when you ride your bicycle freely and enjoy it – look back and say ‘it was worth it'”.

When facing a complex subject or a problem, a common pattern for dealing with it is called http://diplateevo.com/2013/01/forecasting-confidence-levels-with-the-bipolar-learning-graph/. Getting the basic concepts is easy (you put your hands on the handlebar, your legs on the pedals, and go…), but then you fall… and even when you are able to ride a little, it’s hard and not fun. But then – you get it. And then your confidence grows, and then you become proficient and effective (and enjoy). The problem is, if you don’t believe in the path, it’s very easy to drop just before you get to the ‘infection point’.

If you manage people, you many times act as their mentor and teacher. And sometimes it’s hard to explain why things are not adding up, and why success seem far away. And your people need to trust you that you lead them towards the right direction. When a project fails (and projects fail…), you hopefully look back and learn, aiming to improve the next time. But when a project succeeds – remind them that it was not trivial. That it succeeded because they endured through the process, and did not give up when it was hard. And now they can enjoy the ride…