You cannot learn by memorization only. If that is all that you do then one day you will find yourself encountering a new situation that you have not memorized and you will get stuck.

The key is to truly “ingest” what you are learning. Break it down into the basic “ingredients”…and taste/ingest each one of them individually. It takes more time to learn this way, but, as time goes on you will never encounter a situation that you cannot improvise your way through with the knowledge of the individual building blocks (ingredients) that you had previously “tasted” and learned about.

You will become an artist of sorts, being able to creatively use your knowledge of the individual “ingredients” to solve any problem.

I think that too often, especially in the technical fields, we try to just memorize formulas (only) . I think that this is not the right way. You should be breaking everything down to its basics and learning the “whats and whys” of each of those individual pieces (ingredients).

In doing this, you will build yourself an arsenal that you can draw from in the “heat of battle” and always come up with a new, creative solution.

The difference between a cook and a chef is that the cook memorizes recipes, the chef knows the ingredients.. Be a chef!