For all of us, school plays a major part in shaping our beliefs, values, interests, and who we become as we grow up.
While school is an extremely important part of our early life and upbringing, the things we learn during our time at school does not necessarily mean we’ll be successful in life.
I remember after I finished high school, the next step was to acquire further education by enrolling in a university course. I spent an additional five years acquiring more technical skills via an engineering course.
When I officially finished my studies, I should have been prepared to take on the “real” world and achieve the success the success I wanted. The reality was a totally different story.
Not only did I struggle to find my place in the world, the only thing I knew back then was to look for a “secure” job. As I had acquired an engineering qualification, I realistically had the chance of obtaining a job in that field only.
After struggling to find my first job, which took me seven months, it made me question some of the things I had been led to believe about the importance of school and higher education.
While every child should be given the opportunity to go to school and acquire formal education, I have since learned that a having high level of formal education doesn’t guarantee success later in life.
There are many stories of people who did not even complete school but went onto to achieve great things and make a lasting impact in the world. If that’s the case, then it proves that there are certain things about our what we learned at school that we have reconsider and perhaps, not give it as much importance as we may have in the past.
Here are five things we may have learned at school that will not necessarily true nor will they make us more successful in life.
- Formal education is key to who you become later in life. As mentioned previously, formal education is important but for most people, that’s where their learning ends, unless they are required to complete specific job-related trainings. The truth is our real learning starts once our formal education is over. Self-education is more valuable than formal education because it’s through our life experiences and challenges that we’re able to tap into more of our potential.
- Focus on having a secure career. The idea of getting a job and working for a company for the rest of our lives may have worked in the past. Today, technology is causing jobs and even careers, to become obsolete. The idea of being loyal to a company, who in turn, will “look after” us is no longer an idea we should buy into. We have to be responsible for our future and continue to keep up with changes in our industry or profession.
- Good grades in school means better success in life. Typically, our grades are determined by tests or exams either on a day or over a period of days. All a person’s grades indicates is where their attention or consciousness was on a particular day, for a period of time. It has nothing to do with the person’s potential or what they are capable of achieving in life. We develop more of our potential by taking on new challenges or risks in life.
- Following the rules will eventually lead to success. While following the rules can lead to success, in order to achieve what we really want, we have to be prepared to push ourselves and create new rules of success. This does not mean doing anything illegal, it means we have to start setting the rules and playing the game of life we way we want to.
- Technical skills equate to life skills. We see it quite often where someone is really competent in one area but really weak in another area of life. Having good skills is not enough today. We also need to have good habits, be well-rounded with our knowledge, and demonstrate behaviours that lead to the achievement of our goals.
We cannot downplay the importance of school and having formal education. However, we should not fall into the trap of believing that just because we may have a high level of formal education, we’ll also have a high level of success in life. On the other hand, not having a high level of formal education should not prevent us from achieving the success we want.
Question: What is another school habit we may have learned that will not make us more successful in life?
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