Learning is one of my values

After joining APYE Thailand in 2017, Camilla became the Local Coordinator to organize the 1st APYE Vietnam in 2019 at the age of 20 years old. Studying International Communications at Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam, Camilla has a great passion in learning about building relationships and strengthening human connection, she enjoys running events and talking to new people. However, during the Covid-19 pandemic, many countries around the world are encouraging their citizens to practice social distancing to slow down the spread of the virus. Understanding how it can be incredibly hard for some people, Camilla shared with us how we can use this time as an opportunity to invest in ourselves.


Inside Bill's Brain - Netflix

“What is your greatest fear?”

For Bill Gates, having his brain shut down is what scares him the most. For me, it’s the Fear Of Missing Out. But unlike the original FOMO, what I’m truly afraid of is the thought that I might just pass through life, without being able to captivate its beauty, or ignore a human being, by being a nescient, with a shallow mind and an unkind heart. Aside from curiosity, this fear has been a major incentive for me to practice my value: Learning. Learning is my Religion. I believe that I can LEARN to develop a broader, more comprehensive vision, that I can LEARN to be wiser and kinder.

But before we start learning, it’s important for us to prepare our Mindset and Thinking Ability. Embracing the beginner's mind is the first step. We don’t know everything and we won’t understand anything as quickly as we expect. So try to avoid staying at the Peak of Mt. Stupid stage of the Dunning–Kruger effect for too long. Don’t overestimate your ability. Learning takes time, be conscious.

Dunning–Kruger effect

Second, develop your Thinking Ability, this means to go above and beyond to overcome our biases, so you can become a strong, critical thinker while learning. To do this, I would like to recommend two of my favorite books: Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman, and Factfulness by Hans Rosling. Besides, learn how to collect, analyze and systemize information, so you won’t be overwhelmed.

Now, let’s LEARN!

What to READ?

  • Books and ebooks.

  • Blogs. GateNotes from Bill Gates for example. And because I’m interested in entrepreneurship, I sometimes search for blogs of startup founders. I also read reviews on books and films, this leads me to know about some of the coolest bloggers ever.

  • Website. I am a big fan of Spiderum (a Vietnamese version of Medium), Zeally.net, where they have many transcripts of articles with various topics and BookHunter, which is a learning community that also hosts different events and courses. Recently, I've just found this website called howtobeastoic.wordpress.com. It is an evolving guide to practical Stoicism for the 21st century and another: Information, a beautiful website with well-designed infographic & data-visuals.

  • Newsletter. I subscribed to Tim Ferriss, Mark Manson, Ali Abdaal, Wait but why, etc.

What to LISTEN TO?

Podcast! These are my favorite podcast channels:

  • The Tim Ferriss Show - he hosts talk shows and interviews with world's top performers in every fields to tease out their differences from other people

  • Mark Manson. He hasn’t updated his podcast for a while but I still enjoy listening to his old podcasts over and over again.

  • Not Overthinking.

  • Something you should know, a channel that shares little facts or wisdom that's very likely to change your life.

I also enjoy podcasts from Philosophize this!, On purpose and Talks at Google. And as an International Communications student, I listen to Podcasts about Advertising/PR, hosted by Kim as well.

I listen to Mark Manson and Matthew Hussey on Apple Podcast, other than that, I use Spotify. Once in a while, I find myself laughing hysterically because of the host of Something you should know.

What to WATCH?

Youtube is the number one choice. Here are some of the channels that I follow:

  • Productivity. Ali Abdaal, Thomas Frank, Matt D'Avela.

  • Lifestyle. Giang Oi, Bedaulbe.

  • Personal. John Fish (He's the same age as me and he's a Harvard student, sexy in his own way) and Rowena Tsai (I love her, and am grateful that I found her channel).

  • Knowledge. Actualized.org, Spiderum, Knowledgia, The School of Life, PragerU, Kurzgesagt – In a Nutshell, exurb1a, Einzelgänger.

  • Cooking. Pick Up Limes (vegan) and Pailin's Kitchen (Thai cuisine). These two people taught me how to make cooking more enjoyable.

  • Others. Matthew Hussey (dating & relationship)

Second choice is Film. I usually watch documentaries on Curiosity Stream, or Netflix. The Explained series, Inside Bill’s Brain, Our planet, etc. are all mind-blowing.

Last but not least, Online classes. Besides Coursera, which many of you might be familiar with, Skillshare and Masterclass are other great options.


Ok now you might question, with all of those learning resources, how would Camilla deal with them?

Here's how her day goes.

“I start my morning with a light read, normally newsletter or Medium. Then, I pick a notion to ponder throughout the day. I spend work interval/free time reading non-fiction books. Podcasts are perfect while commuting, which takes me around 1 hour per day. Now, in this quarantine period, I listen to podcasts while doing chores. I like enjoying my meals with an episode of documentary or some Youtube videos, sometimes I watch Netflix. I end my day with some fictional reading and 30 minutes reading on a specific interesting topic that I might have stumbled on Quora.”

When her brain gets overwhelmed with information as she tries to retain things she’s learnt, Camilla practices mediation, tries to establish a second brain using Notion (all-in-one workspace), or InstaPaper (read-it-later app) and sharing.

“Whenever I share what I've learnt and discuss with other people, it means I'm consolidating my understanding of that topic at the same time.” - she said.

Enjoy learning! There's a lot going on, don't miss the fun thing in life.

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