One of the prompts for week two Write 6×6 was to address something newly learned and how that felt. I know there are many ways I learn, and I am not referring to the traditional learning styles of visual, auditory and kinesthetic. Instead I am referring to learning while living and below are my stories.
Just recently I was trying to remove the toilet safety bars from one of my guest bathrooms. I spent at least 45 minutes laying upside down under the commode trying to unscrew the bolts that held the rails in place. Determined to remove the bars, I did what most young adults and teenagers do when they need help with something, I Googled it! I googled “how to remove accessibility toilet rails.” I watched a 40 second video and five minutes later I was VICTORIOUS! Clearly necessity can lead to learning. 🏆💪🏆💪
Sometimes I learn things from my ‘brilliant ideas.’ For example, last week while spring cleaning I had the brilliant idea to wash my bathroom light fixtures in the dishwasher instead of washing and drying them by hand. I figured while the light fixtures were going through the wash/dry cycle in the dishwasher, I could be cleaning other things. Two hours later I learned two things from this brilliant idea. First washing light fixtures in the dishwasher is a horrible idea and second I’m never buying frosted light fixtures again! 🤣 😆 😂 🤣
I also learn unintentionally. Owning a couple of Parson Russell Terriers (commonly known a Jack Russel) requires house rules, patience and consistency. Everyday my dogs are always fed breakfast at 7:00 am., given a carrot snack at noon, and fed dinner at 5:00 pm. Through this consistent scheduling, I’ve unintentionally learned that my dogs now know how to tell time. 🤦🏼♀️Most pet owners understand exactly what I am talking about. 🐕😃😃 🐶
Yesterday Beth Eyres (CTLE Co-Director and Residential English Faculty) and I were casually discussing the amount of soaps, lotions, shampoos, conditioners and other hygiene products we have accumulated as gifts from friends. We both jokingly agreed that using the amount of products that have been gifted to us is not possible in two lifetimes… let alone one lifetime! I told Beth that the cupboard below my bathroom sink is so full of such items that I am afraid to open the cupboard for fear of everything falling out, yet I did not want to throw it away. Beth, with her extensive wisdom of all things GCC, told me I could donate those items to the GCC student pantry, which is an absolute win-win solution in my opinion. Goes to show that no-agenda, casual conversations can be extremely valuable. 💝
Sometimes my learning occurs because I am truly intent on learning. For example, last week I attended the CTLE AI playground hour and stated I wanted to learn about and how to use an AI image generator. Thanks to Christine Jones (Residential English Faculty), within 10 minutes I had a free account with hotpot.ai and generated an illustrative image with the prompt “jack russell terrier dog that is mostly white in color with some brown and black colors.” Within 10 seconds that image was populated. When I changed the directions from illustrative to animation with the same description, the second image populated.
So while I can’t say that all of my learning ended with a successful conclusion to my initial desired outcome (remember that photo of my light fixtures? and imagine dogs staring at me for 90 minutes prior to dinner!!!), I have benefited from my learning whether it was learning for a necessity, from a brilliant idea, through unintentional behavior, via causal conversations or for specific intent. Some of the learning brings me immediate joy and some not so much! However, while some of the learning might not bring me joy at that moment, it usually makes me smile when I recall the experience.
If you have a ‘learning by living’ story you want to share, please post the experience in the comment section. I’m very curious to hear your life lesson and whether it brought you immediate joy or the memory brings a smile to your face now.