FLASH: Your Eyes Create Your Learning Style

 FLASH: Your Eyes Create Your Learning StyleMy eye doctor Dr. Ron Goldstein isn’t just a muse.  He’s one of those rare people who is able to connect big dots to draw macro conclusions that are spot on.  The cool thing is that his conclusions have the potential to change an entire system.  When I get my radio show going later this year, he’ll be one of my first guests.

Here’s what’s so interesting about him.

By evaluating your eyes, Dr. Ron can sit back and tell you exactly how you learn and how this affects your life and career.  He’s not psychic.  He understands the power of the visual system in the brain.  The second thing that develops in a fetus after the heart, the visual system’s architecture is unique to each of us and is responsible for our own learning style.

By examining my eyes, Dr. Ron could see that I am a high auditory learner, meaning that I learn faster through sound than through reading.  He accurately described my childhood, my need for glasses in grade school and the coping mechanisms I developed as a result of being unable to concentrate on the written word for long periods of time.  All because of the way my visual system was laid down in my brain two months after conception. Because my visual wiring is more scattered, it precludes deep visual concentration, so I compensated by developing a great ear for things.  As a result, he explained, I became a ‘big picture’ person, going deep into detail for short periods of time and then back up into the global to rest and reconsider. He went on to describe me as a natural boss and strong leader who loves the ‘executive summary’ first and the detail second.  Right again.  In order to lead, you can’t get too captured by lots of detail.  You have to get the gist of the situation and be able to act from there. Dr. Ron says that NYC is filled with another kind of learner, one whose visual circuitry enables deep reading concentration for long periods of time.  These folks are the true students, adept at detail and dazzling in their mastery of their subject.  They are not leaders, however, because they are so often lost in the details, but because they are so good at what they do, they are often placed in positions of authority where they end up micro-managing others.  You probably know a boss like this.  😉  There are many types of learners in between, each of us unique.

This was a revelation to me, and I hope now to you.

So the morphology of our visual system sets us up in lifelong behavioral patterns.

Dr. Ron told me that had I not gotten glasses in 7th grade, I might not have completed school at all instead of flourishing there.  Because I had to cope with reading fatigue so young, I developed other skills at a high level, thus enabling me to diversify my learning style and become the me I am in the world.

“School” is designed for a certain kind of learning which is really designed for a specific subset of kids.  I’ll bet teachers are over-represented by that type of learning style. How many children languish because they can’t easily learn the teacher’s way, growing up feeling slow or stupid or less-than in school because their tiny brains developed a different, more creative way to see?

If we could all see life Dr. Ron Goldstein’s way, we would revolutionize education to serve the needs of every child.  And the entire world would change as a result.

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Our book group just read your book and it sparked more conversation than we’ve had in the seven years we’ve been reading together. Being successful professionals with busy lives and even busier children, we’re all trying to figure out how to find the time to just stop and enjoy our lives amidst so much pressure. Some of us find ourselves quoting you to our husbands and kids now, so you are our hero. ;-)
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