Learning is Hard; Un-learning is Harder!

destin-heroWe are all familiar with the old saying that once you learn how to ride a bike, you never forget it. And that’s good because there is basically one way to ride a bike, right?

Well not necessarily – what if you were challenged to ride a bike that was geared so that the steering wheel is backwards? No problem! You know how to ride a bike; how hard can it be? But it turns out it really is difficult to do – actually more difficult than learning for the first time.

Don’t believe that unlearning is harder than learning? Destin, from Smarter Every Day, profiles why unlearning is harder than learning in this educational (and entertaining) video:

The lesson for the business world is clear:


Unlearning is something that we see people struggle with every day in the University of Tennessee’s Vested Outsourcing and Collaborative Contracting classes. A great example is a procurement professional who has spent the last 30 years perfecting the art of “buying.” The Vested methodology teaches that the partnering with strategic suppliers outperforms “buying,” but it is very difficult for procurement professionals to let go of old-school dogmas that focus on price and not value. The old way has been embedded into their brains for so long it is a struggle to change.

. And that means unlearning. Once we can recognize and face our cognitive biases we are a long way down the road to accepting new ways of thinking and doing.

Image: Destin-hero screen capture from YouTube/Smarter Every Day


  1. Wow! This is incredibly amazing.. great life lesson, Thanks for posting.

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