With every new skill you learn you go through four stages of learning before reaching mastery.
Going from incompetence to competence in a skill is often a slow and uncomfortable process. Understanding this theory will help you to deal better with the emotional ups and downs and helps you to guide others through their learning process.
Stage 1: Unconscious incompetence
You don’t know what you don’t know. In other words, you might not be aware that you lack a certain skill. How do you open your blind spot? One way to find out what skill you need is to ask for feedback.
Stage 2: Conscious incompetence
The realization came that you are lacking a certain skill. This can be very frustrating. To advance through the learning process you need to study the subject and put your new learned skills into action.
Stage 3: Conscious competence
After studying and practicing you are somewhat decent at the skill. However it takes a lot of focus to execute the skill. At this stage a lot of people feel satisfied with the progress they made and the learning stops. That’s a shame. To reach mastery you need to keep practicing and learning.
Stage 4: Unconscious competence
This is the holy grail of learning. Without thinking you can execute a skill that first required all your attention. You mastered the skill!
Apply this framework to guide others through their learning process and to optimize your own.