In an ever-changing world, we’re tasked with staying relevant and profitable. Often, leaders turn to books, lectures, and workshops to stay current.

This is the traditional approach. But what if I actually told you, for you to have a more abundant personal and professional life, you actually have to adopt the philosophy of continuous unlearning?

This might strike you as counterintuitive. How many times have you heard someone say, “I am a continuous learner”?

We learn something new every day, whether through our own personal experience, or through someone else’s, or through formal education. This new learning helps us to be smarter and more productive, and that leads to a more abundant life, right? Wrong!

To actually begin to live a more abundant life, you have to start unlearning things that have become commonplace to you.

You need to continue learning. I am not arguing that. The problems start when you apply your own judgment to that learning because it begins to limit your curiosity and ultimately stifles creativity. 

Do you ever wonder the real reason we put baby gates up in front of stairwells? On the surface, we would say that it is to protect the baby from hurting itself. In all reality, we are protecting the baby from their own curiosity. Babies are born with little to no judgment which allows them to very curious.

Sometimes they might hurt themselves by being curious, but they also learn to walk and talk by being curious. When learning to walk, we let a baby fall, over and over, with no worry of them harming themselves, because we believe walking is the right thing to do. As they get older, what are you not letting them be curious about because you are afraid they will harm themselves?

Have you ever been in a meeting and heard someone say, “That will never work”? They aren’t saying this because they want to be defiant, they are saying it because they have learned something in the past, and they are applying that judgment—good or bad—to the current situation.

What would happen if that person would just suspend their judgment, and be curious about the new situation?

We are all capable of taking in new information and applying it. The question for you: are you equally willing to unlearn? Identify situations where you’re not satisfied with your common reaction and practice unlearning in your daily life:

  • Write down what triggers you to react instead of respond.
  • Imagine how different your life could be if you paused, suspended judgment, and responded differently.
  • Challenge the things you believe to be true and establish an unlearning list alongside your current list of things to learn.

Make the Shift to a Higher Level of Consciousness

When was the last time you stepped back and looked at how you approach situations as a leader? Raise your level of consciousness about yourself—in order to make better decisions, have greater perspective, and to improve your ability to problem-solve. Attend the Explore Conscious Leadership Program to become your greatest self, at work and at home.