Steps to learning new technology

Learning a new technology is not that different from learning a new sport or a new language, repetition is everything.  So what steps can you take in order to learn a new technology?

1.  Don't panic or resist.  This is the big mistake most people make.  They become paralyzed in fear.  They fear having to put in the time or change their system.  Take a deep breath, relax, and think about what you will be able to do instead of what you're going to have to learn.

2.  Read the instructions.  I know this sounds elementary but it's really important.  

3.  Find an expert teacher.  Notice that I didn't say find an expert, I said find and expert teacher.  When you are using something new you need someone who can teach, not tell you how the device operates.  If you can't find a friend or someone you know go to the internet! I can't think of a piece of technology device that I have purchased in the last five years that I couldn't find a great "how to use" video on YouTube.  A great teacher follows this pattern: 1. Watch me do it, 2. Let's do it together, 3. Now you do it, 4. Now teach me how to do it.  Don't take eight pages of notes because you are focused more on what you are writing than the actual steps to make something happen.

4.  Practice.  I was taught this saying at Oklahoma State baseball camp as a kid, "Practice makes present."  The good news about technology is that it snowballs.  Once you pick up one thing the next thing you pick up even quicker.  After some time you are operating technology more like a man and less like a monkey.

What things have helped you master new technology?  Click on the comment button below to share your great tips!