by David

How to Learn Anything and Become the Person You Want to Be

David Mansaray

What’s it all about?

If you have any goals then I’m pretty sure there are some things you’ll need to learn. Perhaps you need to improve an existing skill, or you need to learn something completely new? Regardless of your situation, I’m sure you’ll agree that learning is an extremely important part of every day life. Those who are able to learn quickly and efficiently have an advantage in today’s rapid changing world.

Why then do so few people understand the art and science of learning? Shouldn’t we all know how to learn quickly and effectively as it’s so important for every day life?

Well, that’s what this site is about. I’m here to teach you how to learn quickly and effectively. I share actionable steps and I also explain the science that holds it all together, because understanding why something works increases the chances of you actually doing it 🙂

Who am I?

My name’s David Mansaray, I grew up in London, but I’m currently living in Madrid (I’m now living in Barcelona!). The best word to describe me is ‘Philomath’, that’s a Greek word meaning ‘lover of learning’. I’m always learning or exploring some place new because I have an insatiable thirst for knowledge and all I ever want to do is learn.

I believe a life full of learning is life well fulfilled so I’ve dedicated my life to continuously learning about myself, the world and trying to inspire others to do the same.

I was an average student in school, but when I left I became extremely interested in how humans learn when I discovered I can teach myself faster and better than they could ever teach me in school. That realisation made made me fall in love with self-directed learning.

I believe in  self-directed learning so much that I decided to drop out of university to pursue ‘The Big Self-Education Project

To give you an idea of the sort of things I do:

Learning how to learn is the best thing I’ve ever done and I want to share everything I’ve learnt, everything I’m learning and everything I’m going to learn.

This site is about me sharing tips to improve your life as much as it’s about me sharing my own journey of growth. So expect a lot of personal stories and rants about what I think of the world as I explore what it has to offer 🙂

How do I share?

I write articles on this website, I make videos on YouTube and I share a daily dose of inspiration on social networks like Facebook and Twitter; you can join me by hitting these two buttons:


If you’d like to stay up to date with the articles I write you’ll need to subscribe to the RSS feed or you can sign up via e-mail

Popular articles

Random Facts About me

  • I was born in Sierra Leone
  • I’m afraid of horses – seriously, have you seen how big they are? Let’s not forget that it was a horse that crippled superman!
  • I switch between being an  introvert and extrovert. I like to share with people, but I often choose to spend time on my own to think – thinking is  sexy, but people are also sexy; either way, I win 😉
  • I’m at University studying Linguistics and Social Anthropology
  • I hate authority. Don’t get me started…..

Don’t hesitate to send me a message if you have any questions, or just  want to say hi  –  I’m friendly 🙂

  • hi David keep striving for knowledge……it is vast.

  • Just curious, what are you studying at the university?

    • Hey Amy I’d like to give you a warm welcome to my site. Thanks for stopping by.

      I study Linguistics and Social Anthropology. Super interesting!

  • Anonymous

    I love the notion of perpetual education. Stuff like this is pretty inspiring, and spreading that passion can do a whole lot to change the lives of the people you encounter. Welcome to the blogosphere David, I’ll be looking forward to hearing more of what you have to share! 頑張ってね。

  • Jana Fadness

    Have you ever heard of this book?

    http://tinyurl.com/3r8fn7n

    It sounds to me like you might be a “scanner” too. =)

    • I haven’t read this exact book, but I am familiar with her work and the term.

      Sounds like you are one too. I’ve struggled to find people that undertstand me. I’m sure we’ll get along just fine 😀

  • Chris

    Are you familiar with the full expression?: “Jack of all trades, master of none, but oftentimes better than master of one.” Slightly more fitting!

    I personally go with “Jack of all trades, master of some.”

    • Until you just mentioned it I wasn’t aware of the full expression. Thanks for sharing.

      I personally prefer yours 😉

  • Hi David, pleased to find you! All by just a lucky twitter follow 🙂

    From the “geek of all trades, master of none” 🙂

    Ruben

  • I like this blog.
    I like your goals. 😀

  • Cześć David,
    I’m English learner and I find your podcasts really interesting for me. Thanks!

    Piotr

  • Rajeev

    Get a job. You are starting to bore everyone. How long to you intend to sponge off everyone else and no doubt the state ? I’m not paying taxes to support lazy and sorry ar*e. How old are you ? What makes you think you are qualified to give advice ? You are a fraud.

    You say you love learning ? Learn this – You’re a tw*t and noone likes you.

  • Sara

    Thank you!!!! for your words, they are very helpful for me!!!

  • Jscwc

    Hello David, in my experience of learning language, most difficult is not speaking, but listening, even you had spend many years of it, would you share somethings about it?

  • preiti

    hello..i read your articles and became interested..Actually i was in search of answer to the question i.e “can a person learn as many things(different fields and subjects)? is there no any limitation to learning new things??
    I am also a person with 3-4 interests, but dont have a exact passion in any? So i am in a great confusion, what to choose?

    • There’s no concrete answer, but I don’t think there are limitations on learning new things, however the more things you take on the slower you will progress.
      What shall you choose? I can’t make that decision for you but the best advice I can give you is to start out with a goal. Where do you want to be in 5 years time? If you can answer this question then it should become clear what you should give most of your attention.
      Something else I’ve tried with great success is rotating my priorities. For example, I may focus most of my attention for two weeks on studying Japanese and practice playing an instrument a little, and in the next two weeks switch my focus around.
      Let me know what you think!

      All the best,

      David

      • Andie

        Hey David, I really like all that you have to say and glad I found you. In relation to my previous post to prieti’s comments, I am curious how you are making a living? That is of course, if you are willing to share…

        • I’ll be writing about this soon! I’ve had this question so many times! 🙂

      • Antonio

        The best way to define David Mansaray is as a thief, you have no credibility, pay what you owe and returns the keys of the house where you left without paying!

    • Andie

      I relate to your situation completely preiti! I am also a jack of all trades, master of some. I have studied in a variety of fields over the years and applied to my career at the time. My dilemma is that I tend to become bored easily and then look for a new path, now I find myself back in school part time on another new path, while being self employed as a REALTOR. The market is very slow and I’m not making any money, so I’m thinking I need to do something else. If I look back at all my skills I have a lot to choose from, however it’s like starting all over again at the bottom. I love learning, but I still have to make a living and that is the frustrating part for me.

  • because understanding why something works increases the chances of you actually doing it <<<———– this words are a strong reason to tell your on the highway. eyy, i would be honored to share thoughts with a prominent mind. do you have facebok?

  • Stu

    Hey David, really like your blog, hope you’re getting on well with your learning goals and looking forward to your next post! Are you still going for the JLPT1 by the way? Ps – hope you don’t mind I robbed your font for my blog because it was just so easy to read on the eyes ! It rocks! 😛

    • Hey Stu, glad you like the blog! I am still going for JLPT1. I’ll write more about my progress soon 😉

      Glad you like the font too 😛

      • Stu

        Great, looking forward to them! And best of luck with JLPT1! I did part 2 a good few years ago 🙂

  • Paul S.

    Specialization is limitation of focus. I remember I gave up playing chess because I realized that it had become nothing more than a system of formulas regurgitated when I was presented with a particular response. It started to take the joy out of playing for me, so I stopped studying it so I could continue to enjoy it. We pursue things either because it brings joy or because it meets a need. Beyond that it becomes a waste of time and a ‘diversion’. La la la blah blah blah, lol. I’m typing here because you’re a cool cat.

    • Paul S.

      Although.. formulas have their purposes. And permutations are
      interesting! Doing ballroom dance these days. Lots o’ joy and good
      exercise to boot. Languages are good stuff too. Life is our oyster!!! –
      Had to reply to myself because that sounded so cocky reading it and was
      wayyyy too moopy. There is so much to know and experience. I think that
      once we stop being interested everything freezes and we kick off. The
      key to a good and long life is being engaged in what this existence has
      to offer. In other words: LIVE IT UP. This ain’t no dress rehearsal 😉

  • AndriAn

    I’m a huge fan and always love your Amazing Work among the community. I have an easy question for you. What Type of Camera do you use?I’m So impressed and curious. thanks.

  • Nora

    Hello David, this is the first time I watched your videos on youtube so I did follow your account on twitter . I want to share with you my experience of learning English I’ve studied English for 4 years and It wasn’t all in English since my teachers were not native speakers so they classified some topics in Arabic my mother tongue I thought that isn’t a problem until i found myself couldn’t express myself very well so here I have to look back to how I studied and must change that way so I looked for sites and books to learn and yes I have plenty of books and sites to learn English but I always get bored when I just think that I’m still not good enough in English and the way is too long:(
    any advice!! or idea you can give me ??

    thank you .

    • Hey! Thanks for the message!

      This is my advice:

      Stop studying the language so much and start living it! By all means, continue to read and listen to the language as much as you can on your own, but you need people to help you take it to the next level. Try making friends online and talking to them as much as possible. An even better option would be to make friends with native speakers that you can converse with in person – nothing beats real like interaction with natives. Let’s not forget, language is all about communication.
      Give this a try and let me know how it goes.

      I wish you the best of luck with your studies.

      All the best,

      David

  • Igor

    How can a regular mortal meet you on skype David?

    Are you mad at me or something? 🙂

  • Yannis

    What an amazing dude you are David! I love your approach! You are wise to think like this, cutting through the B.S., ignoring authority, obedience, and conformity! Institutions do not have a monopoly on knowledge. Not in the age of the internet! To be a ‘homo universalis’ or a polyglot are both truly magnificent goals. Keep learning! You have intelligence, wisdom, and tons of character too! It comes across man! Falling upon your website today really made my day and put a smile on my face. You are doing a great job at motivating others to live a better life, a life closer to knowledge. I am a 31 year old guy from Greece, who studied in the UK, obtained a few degrees, taught on undergraduate business studies programs for four years, and eventually dropped out of a PhD program because I too can’t stand others telling me what to do. Plus I love real learning and real learning is liberal not institutionalized. Today I am unemployed, living with my parents, in a country with a worse economy than Spain. But I read, I write, and I learn everyday. And that is fine! We will make it man! We just need to be positive, keep learning, and learn to think and act like entrepreneurs (otherwise we might starve!). Anyway, you have motivated me to continue learning Spanish – I had put it aside for a year but will now give it another go. I am so glad to see a Brit engaging in the love of languages – you are a rare phenomenon, well done! And although the path you have chosen is a difficult one, please keep going man. With your mental attitude and capacities you have a lot to offer the world and a lot to receive too. Don’t lose faith in yourself man! Thanks for your website and videos, they really are great.

    Alll the best,

    Yanni

    P.S. 1 Always remember these wise words from a great American social philosopher (also an autodidact like yourself) called Eric Hoffer: “In times of change, learners inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.” And these are times of great change dude, trust me on this one! (If you like this quote, read the guy’s biography on wikipedia, it’s inspiring).

    P.S. 2 Una otra frase que me gusta mucho es from un escritor Griego que se llama Nikos Kazantzakis y it goes like this: “Las grandes leyes de la naturaleza son: no corras, no seas impaciente, y confia en el ritmo eterno’. Learning and taking it easy go hand in hand. Don’t rush it! Stress kills learning! Also, thanks for inspiring me to attempt to write my first 2 sentences in Spanish after a year of zero study!

  • Konrad

    David, I just want to write that I fully understand your approach of constant stelf-studying. I`m glad that there are people like you being proud of the work they do. In my environment when I say “I like studying” people laugh at me, and walking away, in my mind I laugh at them 🙂 Hope I can call myself a philomath too 😛 Great job, David.

    • Thanks!

      I’d say, if you like learning, you’re a philomath 😉

  • Jannick Klitgaard Henriksen

    Hi David!
    In many ways, our mindsets are alike. Are you familiar with the following sites?:
    http://khanacademy.org/
    https://www.edx.org/
    http://ocw.mit.edu/index.htm
    http://www.ted.com/
    http://www.youtube.com/user/crashcourse

    If not, I think you will find them very interesting. Khanacademy and Mit mostly have materials on math and science – I think you should explore them, eventually I think you will love them. It is my assessment that they will make a positive, constructive and fruitfull addition to your learning vocabulary.

    Best wishes and support from me

    Jannick Klitgaard Henriksen 🙂

  • Romo889

    Just wanted to say that ive just listened to your podcast and found it to be very very informative. It was the one about meaningful relationships. Wheres part 2!?!?!

    • Hi! thanks for the comment. I’ve been *really* busy so I’ve not been able to record it, but I do plan to get it recorded before the ending of the year! 😀

  • You’re viewpoints on learning are very interesting David! I have to say that I truly enjoy your podcasts and this site in general

    • I’m glad you’re enjoying the work I publish!

      Thanks so much for taking the time to comment! I really appreciate! 🙂

  • Douglasnimoh

    Hi David, I love your blog. I found it as I was doing a research on the power of self-education for a big youth event in the UK where I am the main speaker. Jim Rohn said ““Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.”. No matter what we do we should take charge of our future through self-education. The internet is the world’s largest library. There is nothing that you can’t learn these days. It’s only through self-education that you can change your destiny. All great scholars and achievers spent most of their time on self-education although most of them were in formal education.
    An investment in knowledge pays the best interest. – Benjamin Franklin

  • Cat Ramos キャット ラモス

    日本語、頑張ってください!:)
    キャット
    マニラ、フィリピン

  • Hassan Mousa J. Kiehne

    Hi David, are you Mende?

  • FreedomFighter

    Is he still alive?

  • Karla Luster

    Cool!!! I love this & your message, great stuff on your site. You’re an ambivert ha ha haa!. I really resonate with your strong desire for learning and growing.