3 Minutes to read
30-day Learning Challenge by Aurore Lanchart
Learning has always been my greatest passion. My love for learning took me from the music recording industry to the startup ecosystem. Some may think that you can’t learn from music, but I learned Spanish in six months, just listening to Spanish songs. However, it became clear that the music industry wasn’t right for me, so I set my eyes on the Paris tech scene. Today I work for Clind, a French startup based at Station F. Clind is the personal learning assistant of any learner’s dreams. I joined this adventure out of my conviction that learning should be an easy and enjoyable routine.
Now, fast-forward to my 30-day finance learning challenge. Surrounded by the learning environment Clind had propelled me into, I was ready to learn something new. But, to be candid, this learning journey began due to a sense of fear. I have always been fearful of finance and had a somewhat toxic relationship with money. I realized the only way to stop being afraid of a subject and be at peace was to master it. I decided to use Clind to do a 30-day challenge. I read articles and wrote takeaways about finance and investing. (Message me 💌 at firstname.lastname@example.org to get access to my Clind Collections 📚.)
One issue, particularly in finance, where questionable FOREX sites are common, is finding reliable information sources. I will explain how to recognize a trustworthy site. Reliable sites cannot replace a professional’s advice. But, they still allow you to understand more clearly and question professionals.
How to find a reliable site? 💻
This may seem obvious, but we must be vigilant about sites that advocate too much risk-taking with the promise of becoming a millionaire in two weeks.
Since I live in France and invest mainly in this country, I check the French companies’ sites governed by French law. This assures me that the information will be trustworthy.
If I visit a site that sells financial products, I check that it is not blacklisted by The French Authority of Financial Market on the AMFblacklist. Most countries should have similar lists.
It is crucial to compare several sources. This allows you to double-check claims and ideas to make better choices. For example, some articles would have encouraged me to invest in gold coins, but another article explained to me not to invest in it.
Clind’s AI automatically sources safe and reliable articles that I would not have found independently, which challenged some of my financial choices.
What knowledge do I need? 🧠
For learning to be as effective as possible, you need to determine the skill you want to acquire or improve. In my case, I wanted to understand the workings of the financial industry and know how to invest intelligently. At the start of my challenge, I knew I needed to make sure Clind’s AI knew to start recommending articles on this topic, as it was not previously a subject where I had shown interest. I first began by reading articles about the stock market and uploaded it on Clind. It helped the AI to recommend me more articlesThen I moved on to taxation in the event of a gain on the stock market, followed by various financial vehicles such as swaps and warrants. This allowed me to broaden my vision and understand the risks and rewards inherent to potential investments.
The routine 🤸♀️
I have a few sports routines, but I have never had learning routines. I do read a few articles sporadically in the mornings or when commuting on public transport. However, they are articles on different subjects, which typically are more entertaining than informative. In the first few days, I switched the content I was reading in the mornings to finance. Despite achieving a promising initial streak, I quickly failed to keep it up. So, I decided to try a different tactic. At the end of each day, I started reading an article and writing my takeaways. I set a rule that I couldn’t go to sleep until I did it. I soon realized that I found it difficult to remember the essential points when I read an article just once. Summarizing these articles by writing takeaways was helping, but I had to start rereading the takeaways too.
What exactly is a takeaway?💡
A takeaway is a short note summarizing a key point about an article. It is your concise summary of an idea in the article. What worked well for me was copying and pasting the article excerpts that inspired me the most and saving it as the takeaway.
Learning by sharing 💑
To wrap-up my 30-day challenge, I presented my learnings to my colleagues during our regularly scheduled Lunch & Learn. I collected all of my takeaways from the month and created a short presentation. In doing this, I found that I had retained more than I expected. I validated the fact that I had acquired new long-term knowledge.
After 30 days of abs, you won’t have a six-pack. The same goes for learning challenges. I am not now a finance professional, but I now know how to disentangle the truth from fallacy when I read finance articles. Above all, I feel more confident and immensely proud to have been able to learn something useful for everyday life.