Fire & Earth Podcast E84: The 4 Steps and Stages to Learning

There are 4 different steps to learning. The problem is most people stop after the first or second step, never really learning. Just going through the motions and the knowledge is lost. In this #fireandearthpodcast we talk all things learning.

Listen in at: http://www.jasonmefford.com/fireandearthpodcast/

To learn you need a combination of knowledge, skills, abilities, and experience. We also discuss the four stages of learning as it relates to conscious vs. unconscious, and competence vs. incompetence.

Get ready to unlock your learning potential.

The Fire and Earth Podcast gives you practical advice and keys to unlocking your potential in life and business, hosted by Dr. Kathy Gruver and Jason Mefford. Real, raw and unscripted.

Transcript

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Kathy Gruver: Hey everybody, welcome back to another episode of the fire and earth podcast, I’m your co host Kathy River.

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Jason Mefford: And I’m Jason Medford Hey everybody. I don’t know why I did a little weird.

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Jason Mefford: Voice that time, I don’t know, it’s

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Jason Mefford: A little bit more animated

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They said,

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Jason Mefford: Okay.

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Jason Mefford: All right, everybody, hopefully that made you laugh. And that was, that was a good it’s always it’s good to laugh. It’s good to laugh. Yes.

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Jason Mefford: But today, we’re not going to talk about. Laughter But we’re going to talk about another L Word, which is Lyme.

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Disease.

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Jason Mefford: Know,

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Kathy Gruver: And then tell. Oh, lemon cello.

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Kathy Gruver: Oh, I love him a cello.

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Jason Mefford: Oh, no.

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Kathy Gruver: limericks. Oh, there was a young no

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Jason Mefford: No.

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Jason Mefford: We’re going to talk about learning. Okay. And, I mean, the reason for this is, this is one of my passions is lifelong learning and

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Jason Mefford: So, I mean, I own to training companies for a reason, right, because I like to help people learn and it just surprises me how little were taught about how to learn

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Jason Mefford: In fact, unfortunately, most of the schools, you know, they, they do what they can, but we’re usually taught to memorize things

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Jason Mefford: And that’s really the worst way and the lowest form of learning. And so we thought it’d be fun to just talk a little bit about learning today.

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Jason Mefford: Because there’s actually at least kind of the way I usually talk about kind of four things you have to do to actually learn something.

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Jason Mefford: And so again, even though you’re, you’re doing a basic part of learning by listening to this podcast. If all you do is listen to it. You didn’t really quote unquote learn it.

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Jason Mefford: Okay, so

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Kathy Gruver: Well, and the other thing that we have to remember. And I know we’ve talked about this is how people learn is it visual, auditory or kinesthetic

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Kathy Gruver: You put on an audiobook, you might as well play white noise. I’m not going to get anything out of that unless I’m really trying hard

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Kathy Gruver: And it’s funny, my boyfriend was trying to explain something to me. And he was just talking

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Kathy Gruver: And I finally said it’s not, you know, can you show me what you’re talking about. And so we were on a hike. And so we started we had rocks.

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Kathy Gruver: And he showed me what he meant the kinesthetic visual of if this does that then this comes forward we’re playing with strategic almost like risk sort of game online.

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Kathy Gruver: And it took him doing rocks.

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Kathy Gruver: To show me how this was working before I would actually grasp or rock what he was saying. So make sure as a side note, make sure you’re really tapping into your type of learning, it’ll make it easier for you.

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Jason Mefford: Well, and because you were use the word. Show me. I’m guessing that you’re predominantly a visual learner.

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Kathy Gruver: Is what kind of static. Yep.

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Kathy Gruver: Talking it made too many words, I’m not getting the

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Kathy Gruver: Word out right so even

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Jason Mefford: So here we’ll throw it will throw in a little tip here for everybody at the beginning. Right. Cuz, cuz like Kathy said it’s important

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Jason Mefford: That you that you kind of realize we all learn through all three of those ways right and so you can remember vac VA K visual, auditory kinesthetic vac right

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Jason Mefford: But, but there’s even, even though you may be learning through one of the means that’s not as not as predominant for you. So let’s take, let’s take that example of the audio book.

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Jason Mefford: As you’re listening to the audio book if you focus your attention on the book and try to actually visualize a little bit of what’s going on in the book, even just in your mind, even if your eyes aren’t closed, you’re not seeing like, you know, bright pictures of stuff happening.

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Kathy Gruver: Which is good because I tend to listen to him in the car so

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Jason Mefford: Yeah, don’t close your eyes in the car.

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Jason Mefford: Yeah, no. That’d be but but even some little visualization of the things that are going on.

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Jason Mefford: You know, like one example I use is with the word pop popery

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Jason Mefford: Right. And if you if you visualize a pot pouring as you hear the word potpourri. It helps you to remember it better.

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Kathy Gruver: In fact, it actually helps you

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Jason Mefford: Remember how to spell the word to because

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Jason Mefford: It’s pot.

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Kathy Gruver: That’s true.

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Or

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Jason Mefford: RI is how you spell it pot poor RI

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Jason Mefford: Anyway,

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Kathy Gruver: One so funny, because when you say pot popery I smell like I can smell what that potpourri would be smell like if it was boiling on the stove. So it’s so interesting the way we

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Jason Mefford: Let’s answer that’s why most of the people talk about back

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Jason Mefford: visual, auditory kinesthetic

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Kathy Gruver: Yeah.

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Jason Mefford: Which again three of the five senses when you bring in the other senses like smell.

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Jason Mefford: And in touch.

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Jason Mefford: You know as or kinesthetic touch just kind of this that you know but but

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Jason Mefford: It’s, it’s the, the more of your senses that you can bring into your learning, the more you’re actually going to learn. Yeah.

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Kathy Gruver: And this was, I believe, ends you talked about school they have you just memorize things by rote so much of learning in school was just

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Kathy Gruver: Auditory especially something like math. I still to this day cannot do word problems. I don’t want to get on a train. I don’t want to know what it crosses in Baltimore. And how many times it takes to get there and

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Kathy Gruver: Just terrifies the crap out of me.

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Kathy Gruver: Why, why is this my job, but they don’t have schedules. I don’t understand trains anyway.

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Kathy Gruver: They would just talk about it, you know, this conceptual stuff that they would just talk about and my brains going disconnect disconnect disconnect

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Kathy Gruver: If you showed me what you were talking about, then I could get that better. You know, it was just, it was a weird situation from a trying to learn

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Jason Mefford: Well, and it’s kind of funny because it’s um

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Jason Mefford: There’s there’s little tips and tricks that you can learn to, you know, instead of. So for example, let’s let’s take the rote memorization. Right.

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Jason Mefford: Usually in school, they would tell you, you know, when did Columbus, you know, come to America. Well, he came in 14 do you need to remember 1492 1492 1492 write it down 1492 1492

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Jason Mefford: And after a while after, after long enough, you can probably get it right, but it’s it’s easier to actually do some little learning hacks like this one, Columbus sailed the ocean blue

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Or

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Jason Mefford: Two. Okay. You knew that, too. Right, that’s it’s that’s a much easier way to remember the 1492 because you’re bringing in a rhyming, or you’re kind of creating a little song out of that.

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Jason Mefford: Will help you now to remember. So all you have to do is Christopher Columbus boom you know sailed the ocean blue and 1400 and 92 right we got the rhymes on the

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Kathy Gruver: But here’s my question.

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Kathy Gruver: Who cares.

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Jason Mefford: About Columbus and 14

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Kathy Gruver: The stuff that I have. I’ve not had to use that at all today.

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Kathy Gruver: No one today was like Kathy.

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Jason Mefford: When did Columbus come to America.

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Kathy Gruver: Because he wasn’t the whole debate about that I get into the politics that but i mean it’s like the things that they were having us learn have no bearing on my life today.

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Kathy Gruver: You didn’t teach us how to balance a checkbook, do your taxes communicate with your spouse.

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Kathy Gruver: Discuss your needs have good strong psychology have good critical thinking they had us memorize these stupid things that have no bearing on our lives today, unless somebody stops you on the street.

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Kathy Gruver: During a game show and tries to make you look stupid because you don’t remember when Columbus sailed the ocean blue, you know, so it’s like learning to me has to be customized well we’ve got off. I have anyway learning

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Kathy Gruver: To customize to who we are and what we need to function in life. Well, I’m going to be a historian or a

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Kathy Gruver: Sales boat.

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Jason Mefford: Where am I going with sales but

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Kathy Gruver: A maritime person that’s what it is.

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Kathy Gruver: That I need to know when Columbus a sailing.

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Kathy Gruver: But other than that, you know, we’re told to memorize these things that are taking up space in our brains. They don’t actually have bearing on real life, which always confused me as a kid. And I kind of rebelled against that I think

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Jason Mefford: Well, and that’s why because because to me it goes along with these four things I’m going to talk about here, right.

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Kathy Gruver: Go ahead.

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Jason Mefford: We’re gonna, we’re going to, where do we get to this because actually it’s, it’s, you know, interesting what you said so. So when you think about

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Jason Mefford: Learning in general there’s really kind of three things that you need to have for you to want to learn to begin with. Okay.

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Jason Mefford: And then once these things are kind of in place where you have these skills. Then if you think about the Learning Path process. There’s really kind of four steps that you would go through so

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Jason Mefford: But before you have to have motivation.

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Jason Mefford: Mindset and methods to help you with learning, right. So again, if you’re not motivated to learn when Columbus came to America.

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Jason Mefford: It’s going to be really difficult for you to remember that, right, because again it doesn’t motivate you. There’s nothing. Along with that, you know, the mindset goes into again some of the things around you know

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Jason Mefford: Literally the, the way you kind of set your mindset when you are learning

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Jason Mefford: Yep, helps you to go directly into your subconscious and then the methods are some of these different skills that you can use to be able to help you remember things like

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Jason Mefford: You know, Columbus sailed the ocean blue and 1400 92 that’s a method to be able to help you learn those things. Now the learning process actually is you’re gathering knowledge.

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Jason Mefford: skills, competencies, or what some people sometimes referred to as abilities and then through experience that is how we actually learn

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Jason Mefford: So if you think about and kind of break down each of those right so even, you know, everybody listening to the podcast today. Right. Well, we’re we’re providing you with knowledge but knowledge by itself doesn’t mean you’ve learned it.

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Jason Mefford: We’ve given you a little skill in our little Columbus example right there’s a skill that you can learn and apply, you know, against the knowledge that you have

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Jason Mefford: But that first part, the knowledge and the skills are usually given to you in school or in the training or whatever you’re doing.

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Jason Mefford: Somebody else’s providing that to you. The last part of it, the abilities or competencies and the experience side of it is your responsibility.

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Jason Mefford: And what I find is most people stop with the first two. That’s why they don’t ever actually learn a lot of stuff because they’re not doing the active part on their side.

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Jason Mefford: So in that abilities or competency area it’s, you know, again, part of that is kind of the integration, it’s looking at the knowledge, it’s looking at the skills that you create it and applying it to yourself. Right.

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Jason Mefford: It’s integrating it it’s figuring out based on this knowledge and the skills that I’ve that I’ve gathered, how can I now incorporate that into my life to develop competencies

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Jason Mefford: Around those knowledge and skills. Right. It’s also some of the reflection, you know, because again, sometimes when you read or hear something. It’s that time of reflection.

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Jason Mefford: When things kind of hit you, you get those thunder bolt, lightning light bulb. Whatever you call them kind of ideas that come in, that’s part of your integrating those abilities or competencies. But if you don’t practice it.

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Jason Mefford: And actually have experience trying to take that knowledge those skills and those competencies or abilities that you developed and actually practice it and you’re not going to fully learn it either. So you’ve got to go through the whole process.

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Kathy Gruver: Well, and it’s interesting when I was growing up, I was in dance class and you know we would learn these ballet skills, where he would tell us the name of it in French, which we had to memorize

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Kathy Gruver: We had to do the scale over and over and over again till that it was just by rote. I know, I still know what a petite Buckmaster Dakota PA is I know how to do that. It’s ingrained

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Jason Mefford: LITTLE SOMETHING, BUT I DON’T WANT THE REST OF THE WORDS me, but my

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Kathy Gruver: Small beats with the foot on the leg. Keep up mustered up the fact that I just rolled out off. There is something else.

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Kathy Gruver: But I remember, there would be times in the acrobatics class where it was, he would show us how to do the skill, but we had to prove to him. We could do it three times in a row.

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Kathy Gruver: Or we couldn’t. Check that off to say we learned it. So there have been times with the trapeze. Now, it’s like, I’ll do a skill and I was like, Yeah, you got it. And I’m like,

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Jason Mefford: No, I didn’t get it yet.

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Kathy Gruver: If I can’t. That was a fluke. If I can’t do it 10 times in a row. I don’t got it. And now that we’re not doing any trapeze because of, you know, having to stay at home.

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Kathy Gruver: Who knows where my skill level is I’m going to have to relearn and retrain my body to do a lot of that stuff. Just like math. Oh god, you know, back to the math. It’s like, I tried to figure out a percentage of the other day.

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Kathy Gruver: What do you think stuffers going that one over that one.

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Kathy Gruver: Finally, Google how to do a percentage again because I couldn’t remember how to do it. I don’t use that every day. You know, so it is you’re

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Kathy Gruver: You’re right. It’s about that competency and that experience and doing those things now with something like driving. We don’t have to think about how to do that. We just automatically it’s become automatic for us. So what are those four ways

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Jason Mefford: There’s actually four different ways that you can think about this or kind of stages that people go through as well.

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Jason Mefford: Yes, I got you, got you got them. You want to go through and then

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Kathy Gruver: Sure, so first we have unconscious in competence, you are unaware of the skill and your lack of proficiency. You don’t even know the trapeze exists.

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Kathy Gruver: Then we have conscious in competence, where you’re aware of the skill, but you’re not yet proficient. God, I wish I could do that layout. I’m going to try that sometime

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Kathy Gruver: Then we have conscious competence, where you’re able to use the skill, but only with effort. So with every swing. I’m going. Okay, I have to point my toes. I have to get my hips up, I have to, you’re doing it right. But you’re having to think through it.

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Kathy Gruver: Unconscious competence. This is awesome. I love when we get to this point. That’s where you’re performing a skill and it becomes automatic. Cathy throw a layout. Okay, and you just do it without

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Jason Mefford: Used to well and you can tell because that’s that’s the difference. You know, again, between people that have actually mastered something is is when you’re in that unconscious competence side of it you know when when a batter goes up to the plate.

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Jason Mefford: And especially a major league baseball, by the time that the pitcher releases the ball, it’s less than one second before it crosses the plate because this thing’s going anywhere between about 80 and 100 miles an hour.

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Jason Mefford: The batter doesn’t have time to consciously think on what to do. Right. And so again, that’s why they’ve gotten to this conscious

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Jason Mefford: You know, unconscious competence to where their body just reacts as it needs to, because in a split second their subconscious actually sees the ball.

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Jason Mefford: Where the pictures hand releases and everything else for them to be able to do that now that comes from sometimes years

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Jason Mefford: Of learning. But again, it’s, it’s a way for us as we’re looking at some of those, you know, knowledge and skills that we’re developing and through our experience, we improve our competency level.

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Jason Mefford: And that’s what those four phases really talk you through

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Kathy Gruver: And what’s so difficult once you reach unconscious competence is trying to teach that to someone else.

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Kathy Gruver: Because you just do it so naturally

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Kathy Gruver: I mean, how do you walk

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Kathy Gruver: If you

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Kathy Gruver: Explain to somebody

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Kathy Gruver: How do you walk because it’s not about putting one foot in front of the other. That’s not what it is, but to try to then break that down as an instructor, especially for something physical like a trapeze trick.

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Kathy Gruver: And it’s one of the things I really try to do is I try to break things down. So specifically,

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Kathy Gruver: Hey, can you grab me the lettuce. It’s on the bottom shelf to the left of the eggs like I specifically do that as an exercise because it trains me to teach better

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Kathy Gruver: And to coach better when I have the ability to step out of that unconscious competence and break it down for somebody else to do. So there are times where I’m overly not overly simple but overly explanatory

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Jason Mefford: Word.

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Kathy Gruver: In my instructions to people because it’s a practice for me to have how to explain things, you know,

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Jason Mefford: To other people

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Kathy Gruver: I have a funny story.

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Kathy Gruver: My show

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Kathy Gruver: I will. My father was incredibly good at teaching people

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Kathy Gruver: Whether it was bowling, or how to throw a football or he was very specific and his directions. So when I was a little kid, he was doing something outside and he needed me to turn the water on

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Kathy Gruver: So he said, Kathy, can you go downstairs go behind the furnace, because that wasn’t a scary thing for a kid.

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Kathy Gruver: Go behind the furnace and it hip level there’s a knob, turn it to the left, turn the water on very specific instruction. Great. Go down the stairs behind the furnace behind the furnace behind the furnace knob hip level, turn it

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Kathy Gruver: Nothing happens, tick, tick, tick behind the first backup service. He goes, Why didn’t you did you do it. And I said, Yeah, I turned the water on, like you said, Nothing happened. I did it. I knew I did it right the way he explained it. He’s like, okay, I’ll go check comes downstairs.

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Kathy Gruver: Guess where his hip level is compared to my little

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Kathy Gruver: I emptied the entire water here into the basement.

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Kathy Gruver: Because he didn’t take into account that when he said hip level. That was my head level my hip level was the low one where the hot water heater was

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Kathy Gruver: I am to the entire hot water heater into the basement.

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Jason Mefford: Good lesson good lesson. Yeah. But yeah, you know, even and even as you know you did what he was asking you to do.

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Kathy Gruver: Right.

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Jason Mefford: So, so again, a little hack on learning. Like we talked before about, think back on the back, visual, auditory kinesthetic right

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Jason Mefford: And I keep doing that on purpose. Folks, because you’re going to remember it better vac the AK Chungking down as another way to try to learn. It’s another skill set that we can talk about later. Maybe, but

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Jason Mefford: But, you know, as he was giving you those instructions because you’re a visual person probably in your mind. You weren’t just trying to memorize what he was saying.

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Jason Mefford: But as he’s giving you those directions. He said, Cathy go down the stairs in your mind you’re thinking of yourself walking down the stairs. Go to the furnace. You know where the furnace is you’re visualizing the furnace. Yep.

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Jason Mefford: Totally, you know, and the more that he does that you’re actually processing that visually and it’s actually helping you to learn and be able to go and do what it is that you needed to do.

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Kathy Gruver: Yep. And do you have any

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Kathy Gruver: Idea Jason and maybe we don’t. This is something we could look up

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Kathy Gruver: Where we get whether we’re visual, auditory or kinesthetic because my father was an incredibly visual kinesthetic person and he taught me pretty much how to do everything. Do we shoot out of the womb learning a certain way or does that come from, how we’re taught by our primary caregivers.

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Jason Mefford: I don’t know the exact on it, there’s probably some nature and some nurture side of it.

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Jason Mefford: Probably more of it is nature than nurture. But, but what we can do as well as we can learn and we can adapt.

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Jason Mefford: As well.

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Jason Mefford: I mean, this is another thing that we’ve learned, you know, the last 20 years is the brain. People that your brain stopped developing at about eight years old. Yeah, and that’s just bullshit or hey, your brain is

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Jason Mefford: very resilient, it does change you can train

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Jason Mefford: It, you can do all these kind of things are oh plasticity.

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Jason Mefford: Neuro plasticity and, you know, but with it, usually people are have a predominant way that they choose to learn, even though. Like I said, we all use all of them. In fact, we use smell.

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Kathy Gruver: As well.

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Jason Mefford: Even though people don’t normally talk about that in fact because use it. That’s more of a, you know, corporate or school environment and

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Jason Mefford: People aren’t pulling out, you know, cinnamon sticks and doing other stuff at school, necessarily, but but that is another way that we learn as well.

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Jason Mefford: There are some, you know, if usually most people when you kind of talk to them and you see the words that they’re using. You can kind of tell what your predominant learning styles are. Yeah. You know, like you said, you said, well, show me how it works.

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Jason Mefford: Okay, if somebody says Show me how you show me.

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Jason Mefford: Right, if somebody says, Tell me, okay, they’re probably auditory. Yeah, right. And so again we can start to learn kind of predominantly what we are and then use that in in how we’re learning as well.

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Jason Mefford: But you can like I said you can use all up and even, even though your visual

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Jason Mefford: If you’re listening to audio.

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Jason Mefford: visualizing a little bit about what you’re being told helps you still kind of remember that better than if you were to just sit there and try to remember and memorize what’s being said

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Kathy Gruver: Right, absolutely. Well, this is one of the reasons I like watching CNN, other than my completely unnatural crush on Anderson Cooper.

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Kathy Gruver: Because I listened to the guests.

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Kathy Gruver: And they they typically start their sentences, one of two ways. There’ll be asked a question and the personal gut look

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Kathy Gruver: Blah, blah, blah. Or they’ll say, Listen, I hear you, you know, or I feel ya I, you know, it’s pretty rare that I say I hear you, because that’s an auditory language and

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Kathy Gruver: The other thing is if you have the ability to listen to, to notice to observe what the other person does, you can match their communication style and you’re gonna get your message across better. That’s a whole you know

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Kathy Gruver: NLP thing is matching that person’s speaking style so that you are learning style. So you get your point across better

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Kathy Gruver: I think we’ve once again.

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Jason Mefford: Well, through

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Kathy Gruver: Hey, you know what I learned.

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Kathy Gruver: Today is Columbus sailed the ocean blue and 1400 and 92

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Jason Mefford: He did. Well, you did before.

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Kathy Gruver: So today.

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Kathy Gruver: And everything I do.

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Kathy Gruver: I see. Here’s what’s funny, I couldn’t remember every joke I’ve ever been told, I have a massive database of jokes.

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Jason Mefford: Because it’s important to you.

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Kathy Gruver: But I can’t remember what I did.

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Jason Mefford: THAT’S ALL RIGHT, WE NEED JOKES more than what you did 20 minutes ago.

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Kathy Gruver: I could have done something bad when I was with you 20 minutes ago. So

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Jason Mefford: We were doing a podcast 20 minutes go

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Jason Mefford: You know what you’re doing 20 minutes. I know.

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Kathy Gruver: The sun is just following me no matter where I go. Yeah.

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Jason Mefford: Yep, yep, yep.

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Jason Mefford: Thank you for coming down now.

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Jason Mefford: Alright, so everybody

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Jason Mefford: You know so little, little recap again, you know, if you really want to learn stuff. It’s more than just getting the knowledge from reading

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Jason Mefford: Or learning a couple of skills, you actually have to integrate these things do your part of it by

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Jason Mefford: You know, trying to develop those abilities and competencies kind of those for that we went through as you kind of move up with that.

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Jason Mefford: And that comes through experience. So if you really want to learn stuff you actually got to do your part.

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Jason Mefford: But when you do, then you’ll actually learn it. And then when some crazy guy on a podcast says, When did Columbus, you know, come to America, you’re going to remember 1492 because of that silly little song that we were both taught as children in school.

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Kathy Gruver: Yes.

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Kathy Gruver: That’s, that’s all I gotta say about that. Yes, and I love learning. I’m a lifetime learner as well. So the more I can know the more it not only benefits me and keeps my brain going, but it also helps other people because we can pass on our knowledge to the people around us. So go forth

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Kathy Gruver: Learn today. Learn something new.

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Jason Mefford: And share it because, again, like you, like you said, they’re actually sharing and teaching other people what you have learned is one of the best ways to actually remember

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Jason Mefford: Yeah, and learn and learn yourself.

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Kathy Gruver: Absolutely. Cool. This has been a fabulous when I love this. I’m going to go learn something new.

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Kathy Gruver: I’m Kathy gruver I can be reached a category where calm.

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Jason Mefford: And I’m Jason method I can be reached at Jason method calm, so go out learn. Have a great week and we’ll catch you on the next episode of the fire and our podcast. So, yeah.

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Yeah.