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How to Learn Anything...Fast

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How to Learn Anything...Fast


5 min read
5 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Business adviser Josh Kaufman dispels the myth that learning a new skill is a daunting task.

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Editorial Rating



  • Applicable
  • For Beginners


According to an ancient Chinese proverb, “Learning is like rowing upstream: Not to advance is to drop back.” However, as business author Josh Kaufman points out, learning something new doesn’t have to be the excruciating upstream struggle that many people imagine. With clear insights and a ukulele solo, Kaufman expunges myths about learning and shares best practices in becoming proficient at any new activity. getAbstract recommends his charming presentation to anyone who has longed to take up a new instrument, language, sport or skill but dreads getting started.


A common misconception is that “it takes 10,000 hours to learn something.” This fallacy originally entered the public consciousness via psychologist K. Anders Ericsson’s studies of people who are leaders in their fields, such as chess grandmasters. These maestros, Ericsson found, excel by undergoing 10,000 hours of deliberate practice over the course of a decade. Yet most people who want to learn something new don’t aim to be world champions. In fact, if you follow the right process, you can become proficient at any new skill in just 20 hours, or 40 minutes every day for a month. To learn something quickly, take these five steps:

  1. Define what you ...

About the Speaker

Business adviser and author Josh Kaufman wrote The First 20 Hours: How to Learn Anything…Fast.

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    J. M. 3 months ago
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    R. E. 3 years ago
    Everyone wants the easy way to learn - it's just 'qet rich quick' in different clothes. There are few people truly good at anything in finance - just dilettantes and consultants
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    L. P. 4 years ago