This time, we’ll look at how Ahura’s CEO and Co-Founder Bryan Talebi approaches learning in his life and the weekly strategies he uses to gain knowledge.

Education has always been a point of emphasis in Bryan’s life. He was born in a tiny village in the Southern desert of Iran without running water or electricity. He came to the United States with his parents, who were both educators when he was six years old and immediately threw himself into education. Math and science were his main subjects of interest, but how he approached learning about them was much different than most. Bryan began teaching himself high-level mathematical and scientific concepts very early on. He found that exploring concepts like differential equations and quantum mechanics on his own was much more effective as a learning strategy and allowed him to push past the confines of his classes.

In high school and college, Bryan preferred teaching himself out of a textbook to sitting in a lecture and listening to a teacher. Reading and taking notes was his preferred study method, and he found it difficult to learn from lectures. He says, “I actually don’t learn terribly well when someone explains something to me. If you tell me something, you’re gonna have to tell me several times for me to remember. But if I read it and write it, I’ll remember it forever.” Bryan is the epitome of a self-directed learner who performs best when they have complete autonomy and control in an academic setting.

Today, the types of knowledge and how he approaches learning looks a bit different than when he was in school. Bryan prefers reading as the primary way he learns new information, and he either reads or listens to at least one book per week. He enjoys learning about philosophy, human psychology, AI, and education. He also gravitates towards books about maximizing personal growth and development written by industry leaders and other accomplished individuals. Bryan’s social media feed is also usually full of interesting articles and posts by accredited journalists, experts, and intelligent individuals.

Bryan is a perfect example of someone who learns “differently”, yet his experience can be used to characterize the experiences of many. His preferences and learning style did not match the approaches used by his teachers. While his specific preferences may not be representative of the majority, he exemplifies the individuality that exists in all of us as learners and how we all require different things to succeed in a learning environment.

This individuality is exactly what the #HowILearn Campaign seeks to highlight and give voice to. Share your thoughts on this week’s article, and tell us how you learn!