I do a lot of writing in my job as well as my personal life. I love to write and there are so many great opportunities to do so. One of the things I've noticed as I create and post blog content is that some of my tried and true rules from before need to be unlearned as they don't work for the digital age. At school, I was taught that you always placed two spaces after the end of a sentence and before the start of the next one. It is so ingrained and automatic that I don't even think about it as I type but I have found it is no longer helpful when preparing blog content or working with social media. So, slowly, and not without errors, I have been "retraining" myself to not leave the extra space between sentences. It's a small change, but it takes some time to unlearn years of this reflexive response and, to be honest, sometimes I still don’t catch it until I see my blog preview, or my twitter post goes over 140 characters.
While this is a minor change to my skill set, it did get me thinking about how sometimes unlearning something is as important to the process of moving forward with new things as learning new skills may be. This applies whether it is an updated job process or adapting to new technology. As we all know, change can be stressful and sometimes we just don't want to let go of the way we've done things in the past but that can have a negative impact on our success as we move forward.
I find this can be especially true when implementing new software. While a key step during implementation is discovery to understand current workflows and processes so that they can be incorporated into the new software, improvements can usually be made to the way things were done previously which is often one of the reason new software is being brought onboard. In order to capitalize on your software investment, finding ways to be more efficient and streamline some of the existing processes is extremely important. But, with this change comes the need to retrain yourself in how you may need to do things moving forward.
Certainly, as I outlined above, I recognize that this can sometimes be difficult but I also realize how important it is to the success of a project. Some changes are big and some are smaller but in the end it's always fun to keep up with technology. Who would have thought that we'd start words and phrases with hashtags but now we all understand it and automatically add the # to our social media posts. Have fun "unlearning" some skills!
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