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Learn something new!

Challenging your grey matter.


Written by SpunOut | View this authors Twitter page and posted in education


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Sometimes whether you’re in school, college, unemployed or at work, it can be easy to get stuck in a rut and feel underwhelmed or unchallenged by your regular routine. A way to combat this can be to learn a new trick, skill or even a language.

Here is a list of things that will give you a sense of accomplishment and keep your mind active:

  • Parlez vous francais? Get up on the lingo of love or the language of the future and pick up your Mandarin Chinese phrasebook.  Check out bbc.co.uk/languages for some simple tutorials.
  • Beep beep. Have you done your theory test? Learning to drive is something that will be forever useful, wherever you live and whatever job you have. And do it before they add another million questions to the test!
  • Learn some internet language. Say what? The web is full of tutorials that can teach you html, java, or something useful. Recognise this jibber jabber:
    <html>
    <head><title>Hello World!</title></head>
    <body><h1>My first webpage!</h1><p>This is a webpage!</p></body>
    </html>
  • Learn to tie a tie! Were you one of those kids who wore the elastic ties to school or who had their mam make it at the start of the school year and never fully undo for the rest of the year so now you’re at that age where you’re not quite sure how to get that tie knotted properly.
  • Blogging/Vlogging: Want to develop a portfolio to accompany your CV, fancy yourself as a fashionista, share your #ootd (outfits of the day) on your blog. Check out Wordpress or Blogger.com to get you started; follow their tutorials to get a feel for how it all works. Similarly check out some Irish Vlogger tips if writing isn’t your thing.
  • Keep on swimming: Can you swim? Another thing that is always handy to do or if you do know how to swim, have you thought about doing a water safety/life saving class?
  • Watch TV! The discovery channel, Animal planet, and Netflix are full of awesome documentaries that could inform you about a wide range of topics and maybe teach you a thing or two.
  • Learn an instrument: Guitar, cello, piano, ukulele, whatevs. It can hurt to know how to play a little tune. It can also be very therapeutic to beat down on the drums and get some anger or stress relief.
  • Public speaking: standing up in front of a room may seem like your worst nightmare but learning a little oratory can do no harm and taking a class or making a conscious effort to improve your public speaking will build confidence for a whole range of experiences, whether it be job interviews or presenting on a project in college or a work environment.
  • First aid: Some of these courses can be pricey enough but they are always super handy to have and look great on a CV. Occasionally, there may be potential in college or a work place to do one of these courses at a discounted price so avail of the opportunity if it comes up.
  • Image and video editing: It might just be so you can make a stupid meme of your friend on social media but learning a bit of Photoshop and getting to grips with video editing tools can be really useful in lots of jobs, especially with businesses obsessed with getting things to go ‘viral’ and all that jazz.


Hackaday.com is also a repository of a lot of randomness and easy ways of doing lots of things so is just a good site to check out.

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Published January 27th, 2014
Last updated October 22nd, 2015
Tags learning education skills
Can this be improved? Contact editor@spunout.ie if you have any suggestions for this article.

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