My favorite way to learn is to read and try. And it usually works. Sometimes it takes me a little longer to get a project done than it should, and sometimes it costs a little more, but I'm stubborn and almost always get it done.
Sometimes, though, the best thing to do is to ask for help.
I had a bolt break bad on my 1974 BMW and tear up the transmission case. Getting the tranny out and to the welder's to get fixed I could handle, but getting it back in - that was kicking my butt. (You have to line it up just so with the engine and it's just not a one-guy job.) So yesterday I called a buddy and knocked on a neighbor's door and asked if they could come over this morning and help. Didn't really know the neighbor that well, but I know he works on cars. It made all the difference. The transmission fought us for a while, then we took a break, regrouped, and came at it from a slightly different angle and it came right together.
Later, I enlisted my patient and wonderful wife to help reinstall one of the transmission mounts because it takes one person under the car and one in the car to get it done. (From the coveralls, I bet you can tell where she was...)
So if there's any advice here it's that even if you like figuring stuff out yourself, there are times when asking someone to lend a hand is the only way to go. And who knows - maybe they'll look cute in coveralls, too...