In learning, you should always aim for the stretch zone. But how can you do this and why is it so important? Read this post to find out:
Learning is a continuum; it never stops. Every one of us learns new things, no matter how small they may be. But in acquiring knowledge and skills, we may ask the question — how can we ensure that we are really learning and improving?
You may be familiar with the term comfort zone. But do you know that the optimal zone for learning is the thing called the stretch zone? It’s the main place where learning and development happens. Always aiming for this zone can ensure your continuous learning progress.
Interestingly, this zone has continually become popular in the L&D industry. Professionals aim to stay in the stretch zone which is also known as the learning zone. This is because securing continuous learning also ensures that the organization is not wasting resources on training.
Now, you may be wondering how to determine your own stretch zone and why it’s so important. Here, we give you the how and why of staying in the zone.
Finding your own stretch zone
Each one of us has his/her own version of the stretch zone. It is relative and subjective to our experiences, abilities, and capabilities as a person. The same way that some people are more sensitive than others, it’s also the case that there are people who are more resilient than others.
Finding your own stretch zone is the key to getting out of your comfort zone. Here are some tips on finding your own stretch zone:
- Are you becoming uninterested in the topics that you’re currently studying? Maybe you should start exploring those subjects and activities that you think are challenging and difficult enough for you.
- Are you frustrated with the current activity you’re doing? Maybe you should cut yourself some slack and lower the difficulty of the activity.
- Listen to yourself. Are you enjoying the process of studying the topic? What are the things you’re interested in?
- Ask yourself — is the activity taking me to the direction I want?
- Don’t always take the path of least resistance. Challenge yourself but don’t take in something that’s too frustrating for you.
- Let yourself be immersed in a variety of activities.
Beyond these guidelines, you must always remember that your stretch zone is changing; it is dynamic. When you learn, you also expand your comfort zone; thus, your stretch zone changes too.
Learning shouldn’t be stressful
Beyond your stretch zone is the panic zone. It’s the zone where you’ll feel fear and anxiety. Being in the panic zone hinders your learning because you tend to have a lot of inhibitions and fears when it comes to learning a new lesson or doing a challenging activity.
So forget the saying that (if there’s) no pain, (there’s) no gain because learning should be an enjoyable experience. It shouldn’t be stressful too.
If you feel that what you’re doing puts too much pressure on you, start reevaluating the activity. The stretch zone is the area where you feel the right amount of challenge without getting anxious about what you do. Remember that learning starts when you’re not too afraid of committing mistakes.
But on the other hand, stagnancy is also a no-no. The optimum condition for growth is when you feel the right amount of pressure and stress. Your learning becomes stagnant or idle when you don’t increase the level of difficulty of your learning activities.
Similar to physical exercise, it’s advisable for people to increase the intensity of their work to ensure their steady progress.
Strive for the stretch zone
You can only grow in your stretch zone. With fear and boredom, you can’t help but get uninterested and unmotivated in learning. Having the right amount of thrill and excitement can help you better progress.
So giving yourself the right amount of challenge is important in your learning journey. Start by finding an eLearning provider that determines whether or not you’re in your stretch zone depending on your current level. Diagnosing your language level, for example, is essential in knowing where to stay while learning.
Always Hit the Stretch Zone
Hit the stretch zone in your language learning. Get the right amount of challenge and start learning. It assures that you’re on the right track, you progress, and you learn while being motivated and engaged. You can start now. Partner with an eLearning provider that accelerates learning by making sure you’re always in your stretch zone.