When my son first started to learn how to ride a bike, it was a bit of a challenge.
Being the middle child, he’s not always been the daredevil that my oldest is.
So whenever we took the training wheels off and walked behind him to get him started riding by himself, he was hesitant and depended on us following him down the street making sure he didn’t mess up.
At first, when he realized that we were no longer behind him, he would panic and begin searching for someone to keep him upright despite our encouragement for him to keep pedaling.
Ultimately, we repeated this process so many times that he eventually got the hang of it and learned that he didn’t need us right beside him to enjoy riding his bike.
The best thing about when we see our children picking up things like this is knowing they didn’t give in and quit. But through encouragement, patience, and prompting, we’ve seen our children learn things from day 1.
I think there is something in the nature of a baby that craves learning.
You don’t have to make them roll over, sit up, crawl, or walk. They are chomping at the bits trying to get to things, trying to get away, trying to do something they haven’t been able to do before.
As they continue to mature, we’re amazed and excited when they learn new skills even if they’re basic.
Yet something happens for some of us in our lives when we reach a certain point.
Why do we feel like we don’t have to continue to learn and grow?
I don’t know when it kicks in.
After high school?
But for some of us, we realize we’ve lived long enough and we don’t have to be teachable anymore.
We shun people telling us things we already know and can possibly make them feel bad in the process.
But that unteachable attitude should be removed immediately.
If we aren’t able to listen to the instruction of mentors, teachers, parents, pastors, close friends, etc., then we cannot learn and grow in such a way that is beneficial to our character.
Being teachable is something we must learn early in life because if we don’t, we’ll move through it under the assumption that no one can tell us anything as we already know it all.
Recognizing that others have valuable insight and assistance to pour into you and being able to receive that, is not present in those who are unteachable.
Committing ourselves to having a teachable spirit can mess with our pride in a lot of ways.
We have certain experiences in life that shape the way we operate and when someone counters that with a different way to approach it, we can feel like they are attacking us and not our behavior.
It’s key that when we’re addressing something in others, we address the behavior and not the individual.
Similarly, we need to take that approach when someone is addressing us. As long as they are not attacking our person, then understand they’re attempting to shape our behavior.
Teachable moments can come from anywhere.Teachable moments can come from anywhere. #nmwi Click To Tweet
Being on the lookout for these is a way to increase our self-awareness.
If we expect this type of behavior from children and students, then shouldn’t we expect this from ourselves as well?
If everyone can teach us something, we need to be on the lookout for those moments.
When you’re teachable, you exhibit humility and have a greater chance of absorbing the lessons you need to learn in life now so you don’t repeat the experience.
Would people label you as being teachable?
What have you been taught lately?
Here’s how you will know if you are teachable.
1. You value listening
It’s one thing to listen because you’re made to, but another when you focus intently with the purpose of learning when someone is speaking.
Just in the course of a normal conversation, when we’re present with more than our ears, we learn a lot more.
Position your body that tells others you’re listening by making eye contact, unfolding your arms, sitting up, nodding your head, joining in the conversation sparingly.
2. You take notes
I know taking notes was what was drilled into us in school and you’re probably tired of it, but notes are valuable.
Unless you have super powers, you’ll never remember everything someone said verbatim in a meeting, a conference, a conversation, even in a podcast or listening to an audiobook.
Whenever you’re in those situations, make sure you have something to take notes with.
If you prefer a pen and paper, keep that around. I recommend a pencil by the way so you can have your notes more organized and not have to scratch through and can correct mistakes.
Use a note keeping app such as Evernote to jot those things down and stay organized.
I have that on all my devices so they sync up and wherever I am, I can add those and not lose things.
3. You ask questions
It may sound simple, but when you condition yourself to ask questions that expand your knowledge in a certain area, it gets your mind thinking and connecting dots.
Today, when we have questions, we just open up Google and pose them to the omniscient world wide web, don’t we?
There’s nothing wrong with searching on Google, so do it!
Ask questions, pursue knowledge, just be prepared to receive information and process it when it returns to you.
4. You seek information
This is more than just asking questions and being interested in a conversation.
Seeking information is about intent.
This is geared towards personal development.
How can I permanently solve a problem, fix an area in my life, or not make the same mistake?
We do this by seeking out information until we find what we’re looking for.
Go after it and be open to learning.
If you consider yourself a sponge, with an attitude that screams, “TEACH ME!”, then you’re a perfect example of what we’re discussing today.
If you’ve slacked off and sought out more entertainment than improvement, it’s not too late to adjust that.
Entertainment isn’t a bad thing as long as we don’t allow it to control and consume us.
Sometimes being teachable means being different than those you hang out with the most. An easy way to fix that is to make up your mind to be teachable and get around others with the same desire.
If you haven’t been open and teachable, what are you waiting for? Leave the “what if” behind and start today!
What did you think, am I way off base? What are some things you’ve done to remain teachable?
Comment below and share!