I think research on any subject you want to get better at is a must. You don't have to implement all you've learned, but it is usually helpful to find things you like or that work for you and adapt them to your style of play. I don't believe that there is any one right or wrong way to play. There are tons of different play styles. Find something you like that makes sense to you and run with it. Adapt, adjust rinse and repeat. Just like with anything the more you do it the better you become.
It is probably both. Resources and information learned is useful, but then practice/experience implementing it is what makes you improve. It has worked for me so far, but don't ask me: I'm basically a poker newbie myself
1st place finish at CardsChat 30 Day Course Freeroll (May 31, 2020). As my first ever CardsChat event, this one will always be special for me.
I have to say, I completely agree to what Phoenix says. I wanted to add the fact that I've found a lot of success in watching professional twitch streamers play online MTT's. You get to see the exact scenarios they're put in, and how they deal with their hand given the scenario. I think it's really helpful to get a decent understanding of more difficult hands, but may not be the best tool for someone who lacks basic knowledge of the game because they seldom go into depth on why they're calling / folding / jamming/ etc.