When we get stuck trying to learn something, it's time to change metaphors. If we experience a "learning failure", a metaphor will generate a better diagnosis of our problem than some categorical analysis. When we continually experience the same difficulties with retention, follow through or motivation, the metaphor-in-use needs replacing. Here's another metaphor to play around with: Deep learning.
- Water skiers are afraid of depth because it means they have fallen off their skis and are drowning. Divers love depth because they are equipped for delving below and often find treasures down when they get to the bottom of a dark issue.
- Water skiers seek the thrills of constant variety, movement and speed. Skiers think staying in one place, concentrating on the same issue, is boring. Divers find skiing to be superficial, scattered, and lacking focus. Divers seek the insights and freedom that comes from below.
- Water skiers treasure what they find on the surface, taking their experience at face value. Divers treasure what they find below the surface, taking their experience into hidden realms.
- Water skiers approach learning actively and learn more by taking more action. Divers approach learning reflectively and learn more by drawing parallels, making connections or seeing the subtle significance of something.
- Water skiers are motivated by buzz and their adrenaline rushes. Divers are motivated by discoveries and their fulfillment of purpose.
- Water skiers need lots of costly inputs on the outside to stay interested. Divers need very little on the outside to stay interested.
- Water skiers have very little going on inside as they assume they are learning. Divers have so much going on inside they get the idea they are creating their own experiences.