People tend to divide the process of teaching and learning as if they can exist without each other. That’s simply not the case in the real world. You can’t teach something if you didn’t learn it. No surprise there. But you also didn’t truly learn something if you are unable to teach others what you think you know.
Learning can be achieved through careful listening and observing. You can certainly tie the new ideas to those you already know but you must always be open to completely new ideas and also ones that counter your established beliefs.
Although listening and observing can provide you a good understanding, you don’t completely understand something until you’re able to convey what you learned in your own words. These steps of interpretation are crucial to not only memorizing something well but also realizing you didn’t truly grasp something. In the latter case, you would be at a loss for words when describing something. That’s ok. You can revisit your gap in knowledge. You can try again.
I make it a point every day to learn something new from someone. Then I try to convey their knowledge in your own way. If I’m able to do that, then I am confident I have gained true education, something I use to make the world a better place to live for me and those around me.