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This is far easier said than done. The genuine issue is what we mean by that curious term - learn. This brings to mind the Goldilocks and the Three Bears metaphor. Do you know this story?

The tale of Goldilocks and the Three Bears was once a fearful bedtime morality story from a day when bears regularly could and did come to visit houses. When the bear huffs, you pay attention. The story is a matter of shifted perspective. The tale also once had distinct male and female nuance. What woman in their right mind would visit the den of three male bears? Whether she be a maiden or a cougar what was she looking for? In the telling she runs away in the end.

I have to shake my head at the modernized Baby Bear, Momma Bear, and Papa Bear in that context while the famous Elvis hit, Teddy Bear, plays in the background. The ability of the human mind to interweave conflicted symbols is astounding. This does help make my argument on the subject of learn.

We can…

Do Enough to Get By

This is fine and perfectly acceptable so long as we understand that we will never attain a real measure of expertise and wisdom about the software that way. It is not necessary for Civil 3D to be the center of the universe or our job accountability. It is too easy to be complacent about our competency. That will always be tested. Be professional.

All There is to Know

This is dangerous for a wholly different reason. We may slowly become isolated in the personal delusion of our own competence. Our expertise is self-evident and our arguments are unsurmountable to others around us, but we simply miss what we refuse to see.

We know the end to that tale.

Customers ask,

“How do I learn Civil 3D?”

Do what I do. Study a little bit every day. This takes only a little discipline for a while for this to become the learning habit. We all fall on and off the wagon or the horse. When the fall hurts it is usually best to get back on.

Open the Help file and read something- literally anything- every day.

  • Be child-like. Don’t worry about understanding what’s on the page.
    Your brain simply needs the input.
  • Read for five minutes or less and stop.
  • Trust your amazing brain to sooner or later make sense of the nonsense.
    This miracle is what separates human beings from the computers – at least so far.
  • Trust your brain to understand and somehow organize what you cannot.
  • If you do this with regularity, the things you once understood will continue to change.

Watch a couple of training videos every week.

  • We all need regular input from multiple sources and people with different perspectives.
  • People see things differently.
  • People think differently.
  • People act differently.
  • Be careful to always watch some videos about things you know you know.

Make Time to Practice Under Pressure

  • Do what you cannot do
  • or not

Our public Civil Web Training page also offers the best free Civil 3D training content collection we can find anywhere on the web. We include updating latest pages for you to bookmark. There are 1000’s hours of great free Civil 3D video training stuff up there.
You can even keep up with the latest in Infraworks if you are interested in the Autodesk Infrastructure design future. You can even catch up. What’s not to like about that?

We provide the free video training courseware to do production focused things in Civil 3D. We publish what amount to be free, in-depth books on multiple AutoCAD Civil 3D topics in our Members Documentation and Help section. CAD Standards, Implementation, Customization, et al. Register here.

We always provide Civil 3D project sandboxes with our products. There’s reason to that madness.

Focus on the Majors not the Minors

The Framework for Civil 3D handles all the minors for you. The Framework is the only solution we know of that will not cost you years of effort and bowls of porridge. Our affordable Frameworks product allows you to stand on the backs of others who have gone before, been there, and done that.
The moral is…

Waste Not Want Not

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