Nerding Out: A Real Life Superpower

I'm a nerd about learning and education. My friends and family are always perplexed by the books I chose to read for fun. Basically, I study learning for a living - and I love nerding out about it - so the books that I buy and read outside of work always have something to do with learning and education. What I read for fun ties right into my nerd-dom.

Because that's what nerds do. As nerds, we dedicate time, energy, and effort to immerse ourselves in all aspects of our thing.

Whether it be anime, video games, comic books or education and learning - nerds know their thing. They share their knowledge with others, gain and learn more knowledge, and cheerfully continue the process. No one is pushing them or telling them to do it either, they are intrinsically motivated.

Someone who has dedicated that kind of time to their thing is also clearly passionate and great insights can come from passion. As a teen, Palmer Lucky would nerd out in his basement with electronics - taking them apart and making new stuff. By passionately playing around with electronics, he eventually invented a prototype that became the Oculus Rift.

But how is nerding out a superpower?

Oh - I'm so glad you asked. As I've indicated… I'm a nerd about learning and education. Now when I say learning it's not the sit in a class, listen to the teacher, and tell the information back to her on a test. That's not learning. That's drudgery. It's makes us feel bored and apathetic.

When I say learning, it's focused attention, a-ha moments, it's engaging, it's working through challenges. That's learning.

In all the research I've done, I've realized that there are a few simple things one needs to create such an incredible learning environment.

  • First, effective learning is fun. Nerds have a playful mindset. They enjoy nerding out, it's fun.
  • Second, effective learning makes people feel something. Nerds feel something. Nerds are driven by passion. They are full of feeling.
  • Finally, effective learning is built around freedom. Nerds make their own choices. Nerding out embodies freedom.

Essentially, nerding out is extremely effective learning!

When you are a nerd, learning is exciting, learning is a pleasure, learning is fulfilling. When you learn like that, you soak up knowledge like a sponge and it will stay with you forever. Plus, you can repurpose it easily and apply it the other things. Nerding out is the way everyone should learn.

So never mind boring, awkward, and overly studious, nerds are super learners and nerding out is their superpower.