How You Learn is How You Live

learning styles

How You Learn

Some people collect things. When I was growing up, I watched my father collect degrees. He was always taking a class, learning a new skill, or listening to an educational program. In fact, way beyond retirement and the age when most of us would consider it, he’s finishing up a doctorate in yet another field.

I learned early on: one of the secrets to happiness and success is to become a lifelong learner.

Kay Peterson and David Kolb delve into how you can renew and enhance your natural ability to learn. How You Learn Is How You Live will inspire your learning journey.

I recently asked Kay to share more about her research into learning styles and lifelong learning.


“Deliberate learning is a skill that is developed through practice.” –Kay Peterson


Understand Learning Styles

What is a learning style? 

A learning style is a way of navigating the ideal process of learning- the learning cycle- that emphasizes some parts over others.  It’s not a fixed trait.  Learning style preferences can change to meet life situations.


How and when do we develop our primary learning style?

Culture, personality, education, career choice and the demands of life influence learning style.  Your preferences start early; yet they are not fixed traits. An active child may prefer to be outside exploring rather than sitting in a classroom.  If she finds success through actively experimenting, it will lead to greater skill in these areas and a greater desire to use this style.  The child may practice the Acting style until it becomes a habitual way of approaching any situation.  Your learning style and life path are based on the choices you make.


“Practice is a means of inviting the perfection desired.” –Martha Graham


Is there an assessment to identify what ours is?

3 Forces of Intrinsic Motivation

3 Forces of Intrinsic Motivation

What motives you?

Daniel Pink’s work on motivation is likely the most well known, the most quoted, and the most discussed in management circles. We tend to think that we are either motivated by a fear of punishment or the excitement of a reward; the positive and the negative, the carrot and the stick. All of these forms are extrinsic, and they work only in certain situations. In fact, rewards can backfire in certain situations.

Instead, Pink concludes that we are more motivated by intrinsic motivation, the desire to do things because they matter. This completely upends the traditional thinking about motivating behavior. We have a desire to be part of something important, something larger.


Study: In 8 our of 9 tasks Dan Pink examined, higher incentives led to worse performance.”


Pink argues that we are motivated by other forces: autonomy, mastery, and purpose.

Autonomy. This is the need to self-direct.

Mastery. This is the intrinsic motivation to get better, to master a skill.

Purpose. This is the ability to connect to a larger cause. And, according to Pink, it’s the highest form of motivation.

These 3 forces are especially powerful in motivating the knowledge workers and the creatives.

How are you using the shifting nature of work and the research on intrinsic motivation in your organization? Are you changing the way you incentivize employees?


“Questions are often more effective than statements in moving others.” –Daniel Pink


“Especially for fostering creative, conceptual work, the best way to use money as a motivator is to take the issue of money off the table so people concentrate on the work.” –Daniel Pink


“One of the best predictors of ultimate success…how you explain your failures and rejections.” –Daniel Pink


“Control leads to compliance; autonomy leads to engagement.” –Daniel Pink


“Anytime you’re tempted to upsell someone else, stop what you’re doing and upserve instead.” –Daniel Pink


“The course of human history has always moved in the direction of greater freedom.”


Stay motivated to hit your goals! By signing up for FREE to Leadership Insights, you will have a positive stream of insights to soar to new heights!

Already on my list? Enter your email above and you'll get instructions on how to access the webinar.