I've been editing since before YouTube existed, but it's not something I'm great at. Just the other day, I learned something in my editing software...ScreenFlow that shocked me. It's one of those things that saved me so much time, it felt like I gained an extra lung and became more efficient at breathing. And I did it in the middle of that project.

Until I started editing weekly videos, I didn't have the need to become more efficient editing. So I've happily kept doing things the slower way.

As I was getting ready to edit my last video, I had a choice.

  1. Edit the video as usual and get it over with
  2. Spend some time learning and see if there were some shortcuts that could save me time in the future.

I spent a couple of hours looking for tips and tutorials on editing in ScreenFlow. This isn't the only trick I found, but it's probably the one with the biggest impact. It's also the one I won't forget. Here's a secret about learning.

The best time to learn is when you're highly motivated and interested in the current topic

So, one of the best times to learn is shockingly...in the middle of a project. When I learn something great, but I don't have an immediate need for it, it goes into some part of my brain that doesn't retain that knowledge as well. So I always plan for periods of learning in my schedule.

That takes care of the "I don't have time to learn" problem. You always have to make time to learn and building it into your projects is a smart way to fit it into your schedule.

The Science

This is one of the six Andragogy principles of adult learning with lots of research to back it up. The principles are:

  1. Need to know - Learners want to know why they need to learn something
  2. Self-concept - Learners like to feel like they're in charge
  3. Prior Experience - Learners have a wide range of experience levels
  4. Readiness - Learners want training when they need to know something
  5. Orientation - Learners are encouraged by solutions to real problems
  6. Motivation - Learners are better motivated by internal pressures

So, don't wait to learn something before or after you need it, try taking some time to learn when you're primed for some additional knowledge.

Why all the Extra Work?

If you've seen most of my courses, you know that they're primarily what we call ScreenCap (Screen Capture). I'm rarely on camera. By shooting and editing my own super short content, I'm learning how having the additional capabilities can improve the content. Here's my latest video.

You can see that I'm using live action in combination with screen capture adding motion and zooms and overlays. I'm trying to learn the language of visual communication when teaching. I'm sure it will lead to better courses in the future.

Good luck on your next Need to Know learning break. <3