Are you unwilling to Keep Learning? What's Holding YOU Back?

Photo by Afroswede

#5 in the What’s Holding You Back series — designed to help you think about why you are not moving forward in your job search, career, or life.

Lifelong learning attitude or strategy

People either forget learning doesn’t have to stop when you are out of school, or they just choose to stop learning, or worse — they are afraid to try. Job seekers struggle with this.

Technology is a huge hurdle both in learning and in job search. Understanding computers and technology is critical in this ever-changing computer-driven world as we discussed recently in Computer Savvy. Some people see this as an insurmountable hurdle.

I hear it all the time —

  • “You know, I’m just not into these computer things.”
  • “I don’t get technology.”
  • “I can’t learn new stuff.”

I can’t is a very powerful phase. To overcome those fears, you have to acknowledge and agree that they are fears. Since much of learning means being willing to do something you have never done before or don’t think you feel comfortable doing, you need to break it into steps.

I think everyone in a job search today should invest in both learning and technology. Laptops are less expensive than ever before. Still an investment, but everything worth doing is an investment.

For some, learning may need to take the path of actually taking a class or exploring options and enrolling at a college to develop new skills or learn a new career. If you decide to do that, study the options and talk to people who can help you predict which career path both fits you and has a future.

What are you doing to learn? What are you doing to conquer the Learning Holding YOU Back issues in your life? You can do it!


  1. Dawn Bugni on March 13, 2010 at 9:00 am

    Julie –

    Great series.

    A long time ago, I worked with a woman who told me every time I used “I can’t” in a sentence to go back and change “can’t” to “won’t”. She said, after changing the sentence, sit down and figure out why you won’t do it. I’ve never forgotten that sage wisdom.

    To this day, I seldom utter the words “I can’t”. I now decide if I will or won’t or do something and accept the responsibility for the decision I made.

    “I can’t” relieves the utterer of responsibility. In an “I can’t” format, it’s a nebulous force out in the universe preventing forward movement. With “I won’t”, it lets us see WE are in charge of the direction of our lives.

    “‘I can’t’ learn to use a computer becomes “‘I won’t’ learn to use a computer.” Really changes the tone of the sentence doesn’t it?

    We all need to figure out the “I won’ts” in our lives. It isn’t some dastardly force preventing us from excelling. It is our own perceptions.

    • Julie Walraven on March 13, 2010 at 9:43 am

      Great comment, Dawn! I still have a few things left that I keep in my “I won’t” pile but this year has made me change many of them. Life with continuous learning and growing keeps us happier too!

  2. Andrew Plath on March 13, 2010 at 5:35 pm

    If you continue to hear too many I cant’s, get in touch with Pastor David Andrus at Lutheran Blind Mission. People have to learn to look beyond handicaps or disabilities.

    • Julie Walraven on March 15, 2010 at 5:32 am

      Inspirational, Andrew! Thanks… you do great things with the Blind Outreach Center. 🙂

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