Newsletter #46: Build a Personal Learning Stack

Ramses Oudt
Ramses Oudt
Newsletter #46: Build a Personal Learning Stack

Happy Friday from sunny Amsterdam!

Today's newsletter is chockfull resources about learning how to learn. While I could talk about software tools all day long, much of effective learning boils down to applying the right techniques to those tools. In the end, you'll notice that it's not really about the tool at all if you're a successful learner or not.

In the spirit of learning in public, I've linked to my own notes of the courses I mention in this newsletter. I also link to a few thought-provoking materials that will hopefully help clarify why you use your Tools for Thought in the first place.

If you're looking to learn new skills, you're in luck. In the coming weeks I have a few live sessions planned that you cannot miss if you're serious about learning a skill in the new year. What will also help you learn is connecting with fellow learners in the RoamStack Think Stack Club Discord, which is now officially open to all free and paying members!

Join the Think Stack Club on Discord!

In newsletter #42 I announced that I was opening the RoamStack Discord server to everyone who found themselves without a supportive Roam community. As the server soon doubled in size, so did the activity. And with the influx of new members, we've also started to explore other Tools for Thought.

That's why I've decided to go ahead and rename the server to Think Stack Club and open it up to all free and paying RoamStack members. If you were already in the RoamStack Discord, you won't need to join again. But if you weren't, click here to join the server.

I'll soon be completing the rebrand of RoamStack. If you know a good logo designer who is available in November, please hit reply and get in touch.

Upcoming live sessions

Salon: How to Align Your Goals and Tools for Thought
When: Tuesday, November 9th @ 17:00 UTC

Last week I linked to the Twitter Space that I did together with Chris 'TfT Hacker' and Jessica Shieh, which got many positive reactions. Many people in the (RoamStack) community often find themselves treating everything as a nail because they have a hammer (in our case Roam). That's why we need to talk about how we can better align our goals and tools.

The session will be an open salon, meaning that I will give a short talk and then the floor is open for an open discussion. Click here to register to attend live.

If you have thoughts on how we can better determine our goals and find the tools that support achieving them, please drop me an email and share whatever is on your mind.

Workshop: How to Choose What Skills to Learn
When: Tuesday, November 16th @ 17:00 UTC

Picking the right skill to learn is probably one of the most crucial meta-skills in all of learning. That's because what you choose to focus on has implications for your motivation, fulfillment, and overall future success.

In this workshop I'll show a simple framework of how to choose what skill to work on next, and how to dissect complex skills and learn them in a manageable sequence. By guiding you through a set of questions and visualizations, you can make a flying start with any learning plan.

If you have specific questions on how to approach new skills, or you already have a specific skill you'd like to learn, drop me an email or answer the questions as completely as possible when you register to attend live.

Why you need a personal learning stack

Earlier this week I published the article Why You Need a Learning Stack to Build New Skills. It's the first of a series of articles (plus videos and live sessions) I'm releasing about learning how to learn. By taking a holistic view of tools and techniques, I hope we can help each other learn more quickly and effectively.

If you've been struggling to learn new skills, I'd love to hear from you. Does my story resonate with you, and what do you think of striking a balance between tools and workflows to learn skills? I'm asking as I'll be organizing several workshops in December to help you kickstart a learning project in the new year and I welcome all feedback.

Thinking about thinking

Learning is all about showing up. But if you start a learning project without planning, you'll burn out fast. Before you start learning, you need to think about how you need to think. Or better said: you need to acquire the skill of metacognition.

In the article Metacognition: how to think about thinking, Anne-Laure Le Cunff gives a quick overview of the 'recipe' for metacognition and gives some quick pointers to get started. In her course From Collector to Creator, Anne-Laure dives much deeper into the concept of metacognition and how to utilize it to learn about new topics while creating content about it.

You can find my notes from the first lecture of Anne-Laure's Collector to Creator course about cognition here.

A free course to learn how to learn

The serious autodidacts among you will already know Barbara Oakley, but I can't dedicate a newsletter to learning how to learn without mentioning her free course on Coursera, aptly titled Learning How to Learn: Powerful mental tools to help you master tough subjects.

While aimed at university students (Dr. Oakley is Professor of Engineering at Oakland University), the course covers many useful concepts like managing procrastination, chunking, spaced repetition, focused mode versus diffuse mode thinking, and much more. You can find most of my course notes in my public graph if you want to skim the contents first.

Interoperability, learning systems, and using LogSeq as worklog and CRM

I've just finished watching the recording of Tools for Thought Rocks' August session, which was again deeply philosophical yet practical.

Geoffrey Litt spoke about the need for interoperability of tools and data, Jared Pereira talked about combining course platforms and Tools for Thought (as he's doing with Hyperlink Academy), and Boris Mann gave a demo of how he uses LogSeq as a worklog and personal CRM.

Watch the recording below and make sure to sign up for the free Tools for Thoughts Rocks! community on Luma for more game film for knowledge work.

Join the conversation.

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