My last post was all about how implicit learning occurs each and every day. You can read it here: The journey so far: my implicit learning. In that post, I challenged anyone who read it to come back after a week and share what they’ve learned without knowing they were learning. What have we all learned over the last week?
The most meaningful implicit learning for me over the last week has been on a personal level. It has been about the people I like to engage with and how much energy I draw from them and the energy I give in return. I’ve focused on understanding how my learning is boosted by all this energy.
Most will understand the impact moments between friends and colleagues can have on our energy levels, and whether they’re an energy vampire or the opposite – a sunlight source.
The expression energy vampire is used to describe individuals (they can be anyone: friends, family member, colleagues, acquaintances, partners) who feed from your emotional and physical energy, leaving you feeling drained. I’m sure you can identify people in your life who drain your energy levels.
I want to focus on the positive energy givers – the sunlight sources. I’ve been fortunate to have two moments this week with sunlight sources, so I wanted to share just how much energy these little moments can provide and how they’re often a spark for learning. I’m sharing in the hope of encouraging some very different conversations about learning.
Sunlight source #1
Earlier this week I caught up with a couple of colleagues, one of whom is working through their own personal learning journey, with clarity finally in sight. It has been exciting to watch their growth and I feel in some small way I’ve helped nurture it.
During our conversation, they asked for help to clarify their ideas and move forward with a book launch they’re planning. Just by asking for help, it sparked a conversation where there was an immediate change in the energy level of all of us. There were exchanges of information and ideas, with energy increasing as we chatted and each of us learning new things.
I left the conversation feeling recharged, engaged in their journey and wanting to help where I could. Immediately when I returned to my desk I spent ten minutes learning a few key things you need to do to make a book launch successful. Naturally, I emailed them with my new learning as a way of keeping their enthusiasm going.
My reflection – I love being around this person and feel completely re-energised every time we meet.
Sunlight source #2
Later in the week I caught up with a friend, someone who I value enormously and often share my observations and learning from the week with (and vice versa). Our brunch conversations exhaust me initially; however I learned during our latest interaction that this exhaustion is merely because I’m debriefing all the events of my week, both positive and negative, after they’ve debriefed theirs.
It drains me of my energy and I often find myself wanting to close my eyes and nap at the table. But then something amazing happens – once we’ve finished debriefing, we get up and do something we enjoy. In this case it was a visit to a place for some personal insight and healing. There’s another story there, but at the end of the day I felt a complete sense of renewal, a better understanding about myself and where I am at right now.
My reflection – I love being around this person, but need to debrief my week before they do theirs otherwise I don’t have enough energy to process my own reflections.
So what have I learned from these two interactions? I’ve learned a lot, in particular I have learned that:
- I want to be a sunlight source and not an energy vampire
- I have times where I will have my energy drained not by the other person, but by the process of debriefing and sharing emotional responses to events
- I want to be surrounded by people who will reciprocate giving their energy and being sunlight sources together
- I need to tell people when my energy is drained, how I need to be recharged and that it’s okay for me to need some time out
- it’s important to be open to these experiences and personal reflections I gain from them
- everyone will contribute energy in different ways
- I love being engaged in discussions about learning that generate energy, passion and new ideas
- I must surround myself with people who re-invigorate my energy and passion for learning
Who are the sunlight sources in your life that spark your enthusiasm and passion for learning? How do you give and receive energy with them?
If you’re curious for more information and open to different ideas here’s a few links: