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Xian Yu answered the reader's question: Do you also have the mentality of utilitarian learning?

冴羽
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I rarely think about my actions in terms of "utility or not," so I don't know how you define the term utilitarian learning.

In traditional cognition, utilitarian learning is a derogatory term, referring to the use of learning as a tool to seek short-term benefits, such as to pass the exam, to find a good job, rather than learning as a pursuit of success It is a way of meaningful life, but more and more articles now redefine utilitarian learning, which refers to starting from one’s actual needs and learning what needs to be used. Many articles praise utilitarian learning Mostly from this definition.

From this definition, learning is indeed utilitarian, because even we often say that you must apply what you have learned, and you must combine knowledge and action. If you learn something, it will not bring feedback and benefits. In other words, you learn Things that are not used will eventually be abandoned.

But if you think about it from this definition, all learning is utilitarian. I learn technology to solve problems encountered in my work. I read books on humanities and social sciences to be happy, calm, calm, and let the My life is happier. We often envy those who are self-disciplined. They are not noble, but more utilitarian, because they suppress the daily laziness and decadence of humanity, in order to satisfy the human nature that is affirmed by others and becomes unique. After all, if self-discipline cannot bring The greater benefit is not self-discipline, but self-abuse.

If you think about it, it seems to make some sense. This is very similar. Everything has an economic explanation. Even if it is courageous, it can be interpreted as, in fact, it is to satisfy the self-interest of wanting to be a hero. For a long time, I couldn't let go of this statement, but I couldn't deny it, until I saw this sentence of the Argentine writer Borges: " Everything has an economic explanation. But Beyond that, there are undoubtedly other explanations .” The understanding of things can not only be one-dimensional, but also multi-dimensional. The key lies in your thinking dimension. The brilliance of human nature reflected in the courage to act is also undeniable.

Back to utilitarian learning, if all learning is utilitarian learning, then this answer is a bit boring, just like, if all people are rich, then there is no concept of rich, then we have to go back to the traditional meaning Answers on utilitarian learning? I don't think it is necessary.

Many times you may not have a clear understanding of your so-called "utility", and the reason why I talk about the definition of utilitarian learning is that I hope you don't limit yourself with the word utilitarian.

I can't study because I'm "utility", so it's normal that I can't study, then this is rotten with "utility" as the reason. I can't study because I am "utility", and I feel very guilty about it. This may also be a meaningless self-blame based on "utility".

The word utilitarian has a connotation of derogation or praise, and its definition is narrow or broad. To define oneself with utility is like putting a label on oneself. For example, put a label of "extroversion" on yourself. When you are lost, you will question your "extroversion", and then you will have more doubts. In fact, this is not necessary. I am me, and no label definition is required. , does not need material foil, does not need identity . So I also hope that you will jump out of the dimension of "utility" and let us think about some new issues.

So what are we thinking about? I want to say two, one is the goal, the other is the interest.

Let’s talk about goals first. Compared with utilitarian problems, I think you may need to solve the problem of goals first. In my opinion, the more fundamental problem is that you don't have medium and long-term goals. You just don't want to be so mediocre, so you set up a blog. As for how much you want to learn by building a blog, you don't have any plans. , just follow the interest, and encounter the difficult point, because there is no goal anyway, so it is better to bypass it, so even if it is done, it is just a simple understanding.

Let me say a little more about forgetting in the learning process. The forgetting of knowledge is a very normal thing. This is a mechanism of our brain to protect us from excessive information interference, but forgetting does not mean that it has not learned. Taking notes is better than not taking notes. When you need it in the future, you can pick it up faster if you have learned or made notes.

Just like when we read, we don't need to memorize those wonderful passages, we just need to read them, and they will gradually become our nutrient , and one day when we need to write articles, the most important thing is what you express Thoughts, and citations for thoughts, you just search for them when you need them. Reading is to allow us to have our own thoughts, rather than copying others, and taking notes is to quickly retrieve them when we need to cite them.

The same is true for doing technology. Although the knowledge we have learned now will be forgotten, one day in the future, when you are solving a bigger problem, what you have learned will definitely inspire or help you. What is scary is not forgetting itself, but using forgetting as a reason to retreat .

Let's go back to the goal, our common method of determining the goal is to refine the disassembly from large to small, that is, first determine a life goal, and then continue to disassemble it until the current goal, but in this process, the first step is actually It's hard and not very realistic. Because you feel firm in your heart for a goal in life, you need to have a clearer understanding of yourself, you need a lot of input and thinking, and you need to be clear in practice. This is definitely not something that can be settled on a whim. So the truth is that most people have established their life goals through continuous practice. Among them, reading and thinking can only help us find our goals faster. So even if you don’t have a clear idea of your life goals at the moment, it doesn’t matter, just set a short-term goal, one year or two years, as long as it’s based on your own wishes, it’s somewhat related to your life goals, it’s just your current Just haven't realized it yet.

After determining a general short- and medium-term goal, the next thing to do is to refine and dismantle it. After obtaining the short-term goal, the boundaries of what you want to do will be somewhat clearer. For example, I also built a blog, but I just made a site, and then there are other things to be done. As for what to learn, what to learn when encountering problems, so I have not pursued elegant solutions in many places. I can solve them. After all, the current short-term goal is to complete this site, not to study the technology of building blogs.

So in terms of the results, in fact, we may have learned similar content, just because I know the boundaries clearly, so after I finish it, I have less entanglement about the depth of my learning.

Next, let’s talk about interest. The reason why we want to get rid of the thinking of “whether it is utilitarian or not” is because I think that interest is the basis for us to do things. I don’t know if you believe this sentence, “ You can’t pass an unhappy one. process to a happy ending ." Utilitarianism emphasizes "results", but what we really want in our hearts is often a "happy result", so no matter what you do, at least it should be of interest, so at least the process is accompanied by happiness, you is more likely to reach that "happy outcome".

In fact, although I have written a lot of articles, these articles are also based on my actual needs. I translate TypeScript because I want to revisit TypeScript. I write a blog to build a series because I have finished translating and feel it is necessary to do A documentation site. I didn't even think about what I was going to do or write about at first, I just followed my interests along the way. I wanted to study TypeScript in depth, but I found that the latest document has not been translated. Okay, I tried to translate it myself. When I was about halfway through the translation, I thought, let’s make a site for everyone to read, and then I did it. I have written 33 blog posts along with the construction of the site. I don’t know if this process is utilitarian or not, and I don’t want to look at myself from this perspective. In my opinion, I just follow my interests and move forward. , and keep sharing it.

Finally, regarding advice, I don't want to mention life goals, career planning, and technical growth. What I want to say is, don't define yourself, try more with your own interests, and move closer to the goals you set, even if it's a short-term goal. , start with these smaller things.

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The full list of Xian Yu's answers to readers' questions: https://github.com/mqyqingfeng/Blog

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