Learning or practising new skills is incredibly important – it’s hard to ignore how vital it is to a successful career. To keep your educational momentum going throughout your life, give yourself five hours a week to learn something new or practise a skill. Photo by Gustavo Devito.
As business site Inc. explains, the five hour rule is simple: Invest at least five hours every week — that’s one hour per weekday — into deliberately learning. What form that takes can be up to you, but the point is to spend a meaningful amount of time bettering yourself. Like everyone who wants to learn to be better, Inc. uses Benjamin Franklin as an example:
Franklin’s learning time consisted of:
- Waking up early to read and write
- Setting personal-growth goals (i.e., virtues list) and tracking the results
- Creating a club for “like-minded aspiring artisans and tradesmen who hoped to improve themselves while they improved their community”
- Turning his ideas into experiments
- Having morning and evening reflection questions
Every time that Franklin took time out of his busy day to follow his five-hour rule and spend at least an hour learning, he accomplished less on that day. However, in the long run, it was arguably the best investment of his time he could have made.
What you do with that time isn’t necessarily as important as blocking it out in the first place. As most of us instinctively know, if you don’t budget your time, someone else will. Before your time gets overrun by other people’s to-do lists, set aside an hour every weekday (or however five hours fits best into your schedule) to learn something new or practise something that will help you in the long run.