Learning about anything, especially anything nontrivial, will greatly improve your mental state. Learning how to learn makes learning even more enjoyable. Adopt these two ideas into your daily habits, and I guarantee you a boost in happiness and morale.

Did you know active learning can improve your mental state? Try recalling a time you weren’t actively learning and you’ll notice you had a decrease in your mood, correct? And when you rekindle your learning habits, I assure you you’ll also notice an increase in mood. If you haven’t experienced this dilemma, you either are too young or have inherited outstanding learning habits. All humans share this hidden, untapped benefit lying dormant for us to leverage and this unseen, unnamed benefit might be the key that unlocks the gates to a stress-free life.

I realize I just made an ambitious claim to you, and while I’m not certain that you’ll feel the same euphoric mood-enhancing sensation I get out of learning, I am certain about one thing: without a lifelong learning habit, you’ll find yourself stuck in “rut thinking.” When you’re not learning, you’re not growing. Take it as a sign that you’ve become fixed in your thinking and you’ve lost motivation. Beware this can increasingly become more difficult to change, making it more likely to become stressed overtime. Don’t ignore the signs. Rather use it to your advantage to engage with new topics that you’re naturally curious about. Scout new topics consistently to enhance your career, and ideally have a part-time hobby that challenges you intellectually. In my case, I’m a Senior iOS Developer who is striving to become an engineering manager, and my part-time hobby is poker which I take very seriously to play well.

But learning anything new is difficult without knowing how to learn in the first place. Even learning about something you know well usually shows you that you didn’t know it as well as you thought. But don’t get discouraged. To make learning enjoyable you need to be: (1) curious to learn new things, (2) feel comfortable with the unknown, and (3) have an appetite to go down infinite rabbit holes. Over time as we expand our experiences, we’re building deeper and deeper associations between the new concepts we’re learning and concepts we know well. Every once in a while, all the rules, concepts, and ideas we are devoting our time to learn connect in unification, and it turns out what once looked daunting now looks simpler than it was before. And that’s when the magic happens.

If you haven’t yet, you should adopt learning as a daily habit. It really doesn’t matter what you learn, as long as it’s challenging and you enjoy it. There you have it, the secret weapon to a stress-free life.

That’s all, my friends. I hope this post unblocks you from any ongoing challenge you may be facing. If you have any questions or edge cases you’d like to discuss, just leave a comment below. If you want to support this blog you can Buy Me a Coffee. You can also connect with me on LinkedIn and Twitter, where I share all my new posts.