It's hard work to uncover this model, often requiring chasing up foundations, to see what's really going up. And of course, sometimes you end up with the wrong model (or a limited one). Unfortunately, most subjects don't seem to be taught in terms of understanding - but I've had some rare lecturers and textbooks that are so clear, you can work out what they'll say next, and solve example problems the first time you see them.
I've always thought this understanding-oriented approach is a strong long-term strategy, as I age. Although it means some subjects are too hard for me - like human languages, history, geography, biology, medicine... and enterprise application development (but I'm good at libraries).
You would really like the course, "Learning How to Learn" on Coursera . The instructor wrote the book, "Mind for Numbers"  which is also great.
The course and book teach a great framework for actually learning and comprehension.
I had the fantasy of getting a degree in a completely unrelated field and finding a fun part time gig. Now, if I'm honest with myself, I'm not really sure that I'm up for the task... and that's really disheartening.
She had to fight all her way from not having an email to do homeworks in video.
She worked extremely hard 4 to 6 hours a day...
Now she is enrolling in college...
Hang in there you CAN do it..
It won't be easy but it will be Worthy.
I remember being 21 at a company, and claimed, and could, write anything they wanted. The older members slowed me down with their inability to understand, well, to me.
But I was writing awful code. To me it was beautiful and worked fine, but as I learned more in years coming I learned design practices and testability, which were nonexistent.
I think this is normal, but to me, sad. I have learned some bit of wisdom in these years, but can admit my brain isn't as fast as it once was. Where's the divide, where do I go? I'm a software engineer, that one day will be replaced with a much younger, headstrong kid, who is much more productive, just as I was back then.
I've found recently (I'm 51) that my ability to remember the names of people has got a lot better - something that I used to be terrible at. I'm not aware of any areas where my memory has got noticeably worse, not that I can remember anyway.
I figured out this skill is like a muscle; use it or lose it. The more I put myself out there and greeted people and actively listened to them, the greater my recall ability strengthened over time. Personally, it helps me recall better if I take an active, compassionate interest in the person; somehow, the emotion makes the recall more persistent for me, but YMMV on what techniques help.
If you are raising young children, I've read that you start this skill early by asking the children before each party/gathering that they are expected to learn the name of one new person they have never met before, learn one fact about that new person, and remember the names of everyone they already know from before (children's parties usually are planned enough that a list of most everyone is known in advance, making this part easier). After the party, the children then describe everyone they met, the one new person they met, and what they talked about.
It helps to show interest in your conversation partner, not as technique of influence, but because people can be generally more interesting if you pay attention.
The number one indicator of poor listening for me is holding a response in my head and just waiting until the other person finishes talking so I can spew my wisdom. Taking an improv class or three helps a lot in learning to listen.
I have been learning Spanish for the past year and find it incredibly difficult to retain things I would have found easier when I was young.
With numbers and general vocabulary I find the same tricks I use for names works OK but for rules of grammar (which are absolutely essential for speaking Spanish fluently) these tricks are of no use at all.
But I've never been able to remember names of plant and trees even though I generally have a ridiculously good memory for "useless trivia" as my wife puts it. :-)
It pains me to think that others are put off by this. My old self was indeed much faster, and had plenty more stamina, but all that means I could make the wrong decision at half the speed for twice the time. I wouldn't go back if I could.
"Computers let you make more mistakes faster than any invention in the history of mankind, with the possible exception of tequila and hanguns."
I have worked in software too, although I started later, and I think that's just how things go. As a chef I don't (edit) fear newer chef's, I know they have a lot to learn, and from my (limited) experience coding, I (would like to haha) assume it's the same.
At the same time, don't let that experience weigh you down. Try to embrace breaking out of your comfort zone like you did when you were young.
> I'll read examples and understand immediately then not
> bother with the exercises
I haven't seen brain.fm, but there's so many tools that can help me improve the way I work.
I direct one to the opening of Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs to really learn what programming is: