- By Dwaipayan, 18 May 2021 | 4 MIN READ
Young or old, knowledge stays unlimited! Lifelong learning (LLL) is the continuing, voluntary, and self-motivated quest for knowledge for either personal or professional reasons. Statistics show that increasing numbers of people are pursuing further education, training, or certification in entry-level, mid-career levels, and senior career levels. In addition, recent college grads understand that earning a degree by no means marks the end of knowledge and skills acquisition.
The Value of Lifelong Learning
Lifelong learning reaches well beyond the individual learner. From an organizational perspective, learning is the foundation of operational excellence, continuous improvement, and innovation; and innovation and productivity increases strengthen our economy. Therefore, no matter if you’re a long-tenured employee or entering the workforce for the first time, employers seek workers who:
have the knowledge, skills, and ability to the job well and are committed to continuous growth and development throughout their careers.
Many of us naturally engage in lifelong learning. It feeds our curious nature and desire to “be better”. Yet, it’s undeniable that LLL is a necessity for each and every one of us. Continual learning is an economic imperative in order to compete in today’s world of increasing globalization, rapidly-evolving technologies, and the shifting employment landscape.
Studies predict that about half of today’s jobs will be eliminated by 2025 as a result of technological innovation. Trends in artificial intelligence, automation, and offshoring will continue to drive constant changes in the way that work is done. And successful navigation of the ever-changing world of work demands lifelong learning, ongoing skills development, and the mastery of new technologies.
Undoubtedly, LLL provides opportunities to enhance or expand your skill set. But “skilling up to keep up” is not the only reason to engage in lifelong learning. There are many benefits that result from it, such as:
#Employability: In today’s work environment, it’s not uncommon for people to change jobs 10 to 15 times throughout their careers. Workers who grow their knowledge and skills in alignment with employer needs:
#Practicality: Due in large part to the information age, we’re becoming a do-it-yourself (DIY) culture. Along with countless other advantages, the Internet has given us the ability to acquire knowledge on demand and learn how to do virtually thousands of things – anytime and anywhere!
#Social awareness and perspective: To genuinely understand and empathize with others, increase social awareness, and foster strong interpersonal relationships, it’s important to seek out new perspectives. Enhancing the skills that positively impact emotional intelligence can bring even greater happiness and success, both personally and at work. (For more information: The Power of Emotional Intelligence.)
#Life enrichment and improved health: The capacity to learn is a cornerstone of motivation and human flourishing. Whether directed toward topics of personal interest or professional development, curiosity and learning can lead to a more fulfilling and multi-dimensional life. Furthermore, research studies on health show that an active and inquiring mind helps to prevent age-related memory loss and a decline in cognitive abilities.
When you make lifelong learning a habit, it becomes part of who you are, and it leads to a happier, healthier, and more fulfilling life.
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