Elderly man using a laptop

4 benefits of lifelong learning

As a child attending school, it may seem like we’ll never stop learning. And that’s partly true! Although we spend, on average, only 15 per cent of our lives at school, many of us choose to continue our education afterward – either formally or informally. It’s for a good reason, too: those who embark on lifelong learning are more likely to enjoy healthier, more fulfilling lives.

Below, we’ve outlined some of the most significant benefits of practicing lifelong learning.

Better physical and mental health

Your brain is a muscle that requires maintenance like any other muscle in your body. Learning something new increases your brain’s efficiency while helping boost memory. It also delays the onset of memory issues and Alzheimer’s symptoms.

Lifelong learning doesn’t benefit just your physical health, either. It can lead to less stress, better cardiovascular health, a boosted immune system, lower blood pressure, and decreased rates of depression and anxiety.

From lowering your rates of super common chronic diseases to decreasing your rates of anxiety and depression, there’s a large, persistent relationship between education and health. This report evaluating education and health found that one year of formal education can add more than six months to your life expectancy!

Higher salaries

Investing in your education is also good for your bank account and employment prospects.

Evidence shows that a college graduate is half as likely to be unemployed as someone with only a high school diploma, and their earnings are 84 per cent higher. This can quickly add up: Over their lifetime, a college grad will make an average of $1.2 million more than those with high school only.

The Bank of Canada also reports that higher education equals higher pay. In a 2018 study, workers in their 40s with a university degree earned, on average, 53 per cent more per hour than those without any higher education. Those with other higher education earned 18 per cent more per hour.

An enhanced social life

Getting out and becoming a participant in a class or community learning atmosphere can introduce you to similar like-minded people. This can lead to more friendships and social interaction, which is especially good for your health.

In addition, lifelong learning can help you stay connected with the ideas of today and in touch with the modern world.

A broader skillset

Whether achieving a diploma or degree or learning a new hobby or skill, learning helps you expand your knowledge. Education-related knowledge can lead to better job opportunities, higher pay, and more fulfillment at work.

Likewise, passion-related learning can bring a sense of enjoyment that can spill over into all other areas of your life.

It’s never too late to learn new knowledge and skills! At ABC Life Literacy Canada, we have a variety of free learning materials and resources to help adults and families develop their literacy skills. Learn more by visiting our website!