10 Ways a Self-Education Routine Makes Your Life More Interesting

Why do I spend upwards of 3 hours per day learning, reading, and studying, despite not being in school? 

Career goals, yes. 

But also because it just makes my life so much more interesting and enjoyable.

Here are 10 reasons how self-education does this:

  1. Develop an intellectual aspect of your life. Many people have found joy and fulfillment in the activities that define an intellectual life — contemplation, study, reflection, writing, and discussing ideas, theories, practices, or whatever else they’re learning about. 
  1. Learn new skills that you can use to have more fun. This one is obvious. Learning to play the guitar allows you to play the guitar, maybe for money but most likely for the fun of shredding. On the subject matter side, learning to deeply read a classic novel allows you to have more fun reading classic novels. 
  1. Open up new conversation topics. Tired of talking about the same old things? Sports, gossip, TV, drama among your friends? Knowledge of wolves enables you to talk about wolves. Some reading in film criticism allows you to talk more deeply and for longer about the recent movie you watched. An understanding of history empowers you to discuss the news you discuss from interesting perspectives.   
  1. Learning is inherently interesting. The act of reading a book or watching a lecture is fun in itself. Learning is exploration through a foreign land. With the attitude of adventure, it can be a thrilling experience. 
  1. Greater understanding yields greater appreciation. The forests in which I used to hurry these days I saunter through, marveling at the complexity of the ecosystem and the beauty of the trees and flowers that I can now name, thanks to my dilettante knowledge of ecology and botany. 
  1. Connoisseurship is a hobby. That wine snob, that film snob, that amateur food or literary critic — they derive an absurd amount of pleasure from discriminating between the good and the bad in the niche they understand. I myself gain a wild sense of self-satisfaction from discerning what works and what doesn’t in a taco, and sharing my ideas with the half-listening person across the table about how it should be approved. 
  1. Expertise is fun to develop. I can guarantee you that that history buff is having a fun time learning about history, talking with other people about history, and perhaps even making a living writing or teaching about history. Expertise promotes self-esteem, and self-esteem, aside from feeling good, is also closely tied to confidence, and confidence improves the likelihood you’ll try new fun things. 
  1. Gain insight into your authentic interests so you can follow them. In reading a memoir about a gardener in France your soul might light up. That gives you something to investigate. Was it the idea of living in France? Or the idea of gardening? What tripped the arousal wire? Whatever it was, that’s a sign you should include it in your own life. This is self-actualization in practice. Learn how to find your calling through reading
  1. See things from new perspectives. This applies especially to the humanities. Self-studying literature, art, history, or philosophy allows you to see life in new and exciting ways. They help you see things you would’ve otherwise missed. Check out my article on why to self-study the humanities
  1. Build friendships around what you’re learning. A subject or skill can be a gravitational center pulling like-minded people together, in online classes, workshops, reading groups, etc., Perhaps this is an area where formal programs trump self-education. Regardless, you can make deep lifelong friendships with people who share your interests and take them seriously. 

For more, check out my article on 14 ways to educate yourself daily, as well as my guide on 10 reasons aside from making life more interesting to engage in self-education regularly. 

Also, consider joining our newsletter for autodidacts and aspiring polymaths! If you do, you’ll get a free checklist for teaching yourself the basics of any new subject:

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Thank you for subscribing!

Grab Your Free Checklist to Self-Learn Any Subject

Subscribe to our newsletter and get the 8 key elements of any self-education roadmap. 


After graduating college with an econ degree I realized I was still anything but well-educated. Over the last 4 years, I've been trying to fix that, autodidact-mode — by reading books and engaging in self-directed study across multiple subjects. On this blog, my goal is to share my learnings and help others get a well-rounded education outside of school. Education, after all, is a lifelong process, one well worth the investment.

Recent Posts