Updated: Jul 6, 2020
This time in the history of the world is certainly unique and particularly pivotal. As we look around we see changes, challenges, and choices to be made for our future. Looking at the present situation, we could easily say “It doesn’t make sense to start learning or creating something new at this time of uncertainty.” Maybe that means we don’t start writing that book we wanted to write or take that certification that we were looking into, because we don’t know what the world will look like in 6 months or a year from now.
A scholar wrote the following statement regarding our current pursuit of learning:
“...I think it important to try to see the present calamity in a true perspective, The [pandemic] creates no absolutely new situation: it simply aggravates the permanent human situation so that we can no longer ignore it. Human life has always been lived on the edge of a precipice. Human culture has always had to exist under the shadow of something infinitely more important than itself. If men had postponed the search for knowledge and beauty until they were secure the search would never have begun.”
This statement was actually made by author and educator C.S. Lewis in 1939. It was made during the time of another worldwide pandemic, the Second World War. It was with this backdrop that Lewis goes on to explain how the quest for improvement shouldn’t be delayed because the timing isn’t convenient. And that is exactly where we are today – it may not be a convenient time to begin something new.
But what if something new started off as easy as writing one paragraph a day? Or what if it was as simple as opening a study app on the phone to look at one flashcard each day? This is the idea behind streaking – a tool for uncomplicated, consistent and ongoing improvement.
This commitment to regular and repeated effort translates to significant gains over time, and allows us to become something more than we thought possible. Since the age of 16, C.S. Lewis desired to be a literary success and he put in the repeated effort, even when it wasn’t convenient, to develop that strength.
Sustained streaking builds upon itself and we eventually find, for example, that we have sufficient knowledge of a particular subject to obtain a certification, or that we have written enough material to compile a book. In this time of uncertainty, let’s not wait until we feel 100% secure to begin our pursuit of knowledge and improvement. There is no better time to begin streaking!
By Tyler Jensen