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The Importance of Practicing What We Learn

“A little knowledge that acts is worth infinitely more than much knowledge that is idle.”

—Kahlil Gibran

Most of us would agree that there are benefits to staying a lifelong learner. In fact, for many of us, the older and wiser we get, the more we realize how much we don’t know—and how much we still have to learn. When it comes to creating positive change in our lives, it’s not so much learning as it is practicing what we’ve learned that produces results.

Let’s say your goal is to get stronger and more fit. You can watch YouTube videos all day long to learn how to bench press, do deadlifts, or complete ten different variations of planks, but until you get into the gym and use what you’ve learned, you’re not going to become stronger, leaner, or more ripped. If your goal is to grow a fledgling business, you can learn how to write better business plans, research new marketing strategies, or read about how to cut costs or increase revenue — but again, until you do the things you've learned, your business will suffer.

Passive learning creates knowledge, but putting knowledge to use by doing something with it creates skill – and that’s when we begin to see growth and change.

Why are we telling you this? Because we don’t want you to miss one our app’s key features: activities.

With each episode in HelloJoey, you’ll find between one and three fun, creative, or introspective activities that can help you sharpen your parenting skills. Some involve your child, and some you can do alone – but all of them will help you build that solid parenting foundation we always talk about. After all, we’re all here to become the best parents we can be in order to raise the best little humans possible. We get it: Sometimes the goal is just to get through the day – but ultimately, we get one shot at this parenting gig, and we’re here to help you make the most of yours.

At HelloJoey, we spend hundreds of hours reading papers and books, interviewing experts, and pouring over studies, data, and research on all kinds of topics related to parenting, like picky eating, digital media, bullying, and discipline. We’re up to our eyeballs in knowledge, and we do our best to boil it all down into digestible, bite-sized chunks of content that you can listen to or read while you’re sitting in the carpool lane, at soccer practice, or on your lunch break. Reading or listening to episodes is a great first step, but we don’t want you to stop there.


Because passive learning can become a crutch. Like we said, continual learning is important, but sometimes we can mistake “motion” for “action.” Let’s say you want to learn Spanish. You can download the Duolingo app, sign up for an online course, or read a book about learning a second language. You’re moving toward your goal, and that’s great, but if you stay there, you stay stuck. The thing that’s going to actually help you learn Spanish is speaking it—or applying what you've studied. It's the same with parenting. You can listen to our app, read articles about parenting, and search online for all kinds of information and advice, but in the end, real growth and change come from practicing what you know. If you learn a bunch of cool stuff without applying it, you're simply spinning your wheels.

App Tip

So, is passive learning useless? Of course not. Listen to our episodes! Read our articles! HelloJoey is chock-full of amazing insights into your child’s brain and how it develops. We’ll help you understand why two-year-olds love to say “no” or how to handle a tween’s hormone-driven meltdowns. The more information and understanding you have, the better you’ll be able to approach this journey of parenting with confidence, conviction, and a relatively sane mindset.

Just remember that, ultimately, it’s what you do with all that knowledge that’s going to make the difference between just getting by and getting what you want: a strong connection with your child. That’s the whole purpose behind our app activities.

Go ahead. Give our activities a shot.

“When we practice something, we are involved in the deliberate repetition of a process with the intention of reaching a specific goal. The words deliberate and intention are key here because they define the difference between actively practicing something and passively learning it.” —Thomas Sterner, from The Practicing Mind

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