About the Episode
The whole philosophy behind the Pursuit of Learning podcast is based on the love of learning. And one of the drivers for creating this podcast is ultralearning, which is a concept our guest today emphasizes in his book, “Ultralearning: Master Hard Skills, Outsmart the Competition and Accelerate Your Career.” Scott Young, entrepreneur, programmer, and author, joins us today to explore how we can outsmart the competition by mastering hard skills. Throughout the episode, we dive into some of the key concepts Scott covers in his book and how to implement these concepts in your journey of learning.
We start the discussion with a brief look at what Scott is currently working on and what motivates him throughout his life journey. Scott’s story of ultralearning started back when he was in university. We talk about how he got involved in extreme learning challenges that really pushed people to their limits. Inspired by these challenges, Scott pursued another extreme challenge where the goal was to finish the curriculum of a four-year degree program in one year without attending classes. Later Scott moved on to more of these challenges, going to four different countries where he mastered four different languages. Scott shares with us these amazing stories about his experiences and what he learned from them.
Diving into the key concepts, we talk about the mindset. Scott emphasizes the value of developing a learning mindset and how the mindset we develop while going through the school system deviates from the mindset we need for learning things on our own terms. According to Scott, learning about learning is as important as learning itself. We talk about this concept of meta-learning and how we can use it to improve our learning efforts.
Sometimes as we progress through our lives, we may reach plateaus where we don’t see significant growth or a change. Scott shares his wisdom on how to get out of plateaus and get on a path of learning and growth. We also talk about how to maintain focus, why math seems hard for many people, and why we need to question the ability of standardized testing methods such as IQ tests. Wrapping up the episode, Scott shares with us how we can grow our careers by combining seemingly unrelated skills to create a unique combination of skills that most people do not possess.