To be a competent learner and to maximise our learning, it is important that we know what kind of a ‘learner’ we are. Take the time to find out how you prefer to learn, what your unique abilities are in relation to learning and how you can work on the areas which are not as developed as other areas.
We take in information through our five senses : visual, auditory, kinesthetic, olfactory and gustatory.
Four of them go via the brain stem but smell goes direct to the amygdala and is therefore the quickest of senses to register with us.
The three most common ways of receiving information is through our eyes, our ears or through our body. We see things, hear things or experience them.
Most of us prefer one of the above ways to take in information. However, none of us would take in information in only one way even though one of the ways would dominate over the others. Some people, especially those amongst us who have consciously worked on developing different learning styles, would be comfortable with two or three different ways.
At this stage, you would like to ascertain which style suits you the most. Take these three quick tests to ascertain whether you are predominantly visual, auditory or kinaesthetic.
You are now aware of your most dominant style and are also aware of which areas you would like to develop for yourself.
There is of course a lot more that we need to know apart from the simplistic model above. Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung described how we deal with the information that our senses bring to us depends on the kind of personality we are. He divided people into feelers, thinkers, sensors, and intuitors. His thinking influenced many of the current tests used to describe individual personality styles. One of the most widely used is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator TM (MBTI) which uncovers a person’s natural preferences. Look them up when you find the time and you will discover a lot for yourself.
To broaden the range of communication styles for yourself and make them more effective, it is obvious that you should opt for the most dominant style to take in maximum information and then reinforce it through the other two. Retention will be optimum when you use all three learning styles in combination, i.e. Visual, Auditory and Kinesthetic.
Use all your senses!
Bonus : Are you keen to discover just how effective you are? Take this discreet test now!
The author, Rajesh Seshadri, is an internationally recognized Certified Leadership Coach, Certified Success Coach and Certified Life Coach. He is also a NLP Master Practitioner, facilitator and therapist. The basket of therapies is holistic and integrative adopting techniques from Psychotherapy, NLP, Silva, Gestalt, Hypnosis and Silva UltraMind. Additionally, he is a seasoned corporate professional who continues to serve as a whole-time Director and Board Member. You can contact him here.