How Do I Find Time to Learn New Technologies?
Learning new things and staying up to date is incredibly rewarding and key for growth in the tech field—or any field for that matter.
But busy tech professionals often struggle to find time for learning new technologies while balancing work and life.
With releases, deadlines, and client calls, learning a new piece of technology might not find a place in your to-do list. While it may seem difficult, It certainly isn’t impossible with some planning and determination.
Here’s how you can find time in your schedule and learn the new tech you were planning to get behind-
How to find time to learn new technologies- 8 tips
1. Know what takes your time
It is essential to know where and how you spend your time. It is safe to assume that you sleep for 7 hours. That leaves you with 17 hours. Think about how you spend these 17 hours- how long do you work for? For how much time do you exercise? How much time do you devote to your family? Do you end up wasting any time?
Once you start observing your day, you will find it easier to find patterns and dedicate time for learning.
2. You don't need to find time, time already exists!
The key here is to prioritize. Know what is important. Know what is urgent.
The Eisenhower Matrix, also known as the Urgent-Important Matrix is a handy tool which allows people to prioritize tasks based on their importance and urgency.
The crux of Eisenhower matrix is as follows-
Urgent + Important
Prioritize tasks which are important and urgent, but the goal should be to spend less time in this quadrant as such work is usually done in hurry and isn’t the top quality work.
Not Urgent + Important
Schedule for later or Plan- tasks which are important but not urgent.
Urgent + Not Important
Delegate the tasks which are urgent but not important.
Not Urgent + Not Important
Eliminate or Delete the tasks which are neither urgent nor important.
This simple exercise of using the Eisenhower Matrix to categorize your tasks will free up time spent in doing unnecessary or unimportant tasks and you will end up with more time on your hands for learning.
To make your life easier, Tech trello has designed an easy to use template of the Eisenhower matrix. You can simply copy the template, enter your tasks in the respective quadrants and start your productivity journey.
3. Block your time
Put your calendar to work-block your learning time.
Make it exclusive-Don’t plan for any other task at this time.
4. Ditch those distractions
As tempting as it might be to check your email or see what’s up on Instagram, keep those distractions away.
It is best to keep your phone out of hand’s reach so you don’t find yourself drawn to it. Do you know that latest Android phones have “Focus” mode as a built in tool that stops annoying notifications? Now you know, so put it to use. You will also find productivity apps on play store or app store which can help you here. Also remember to ask your family members not to disturb you.
5. Don't procrastinate-The next Monday never comes
It is easy to procrastinate and delay your learning. But remember, sticking to your learning goals might be tough but it is highly rewarding too!
Keep in mind your purpose and goals behind learning new technologies, remind yourself about the ‘Why’, when you feel like delaying it.
6. Hold yourself accountable
Remember why you completed your homework in school?
It is because you were accountable to your teachers. While there isn’t any teacher to answer to now, you can replace the teacher with your spouse, friend or a co-worker.
Tell them what you are doing, why is it important and share your progress with them. Ask them to be strict and not take any excuses from you.
7. Consistency is key
Start small, commit yourself to do a bit every day. Don’t aim to complete the course in one go or study for long hours once in a while.
Keep up with doing a little bit everyday for a long time and make a habit of learning.
8. Reward yourself
Make the process fun and rewarding. Give yourself a pat on your back and treat yourself with something you enjoy (how about an ice cream?!) after completing your learning milestones.
In the end it is important to enjoy the process, as you progress you will find yourself wanting to learn more.