“Never let getting an education get in the way of learning.”
Ever since I’ve read that line in the library of my elementary school, I’ve always kept that to heart. I never fared well in a traditional classroom setting, and always found enjoyment and learning outside of the classroom.
Looking back, all the major life lessons that I use day to day, and share with others, I never learned within the confines of four walls.
What are the lessons you need to learn, but they don’t teach at school?
You perception dictates your actions
What you see, literally is, what you get.
In elementary and high school, I believed that going to school – going to class, more specifically, was such a bore.
Guess how I found my classes? I was bored beyond recognition, and couldn’t wait to get out of them.
When I was out in the working world, I believed that it was difficult to earn money, stemming from what I was told in school, and from my parents.
So how much did I earn while working? Peanuts. Nothing worth mentioning. I still feel bad remembering it.
Because there was simply another way.
In school, we’re told to believe what the teacher says. They are in a position to share what they know, and experience.
What’s not being stressed, is that we, as students, as learners, are encourage to form our own opinions and perceptions about what we see, experience, and do.
What we see, what we believe, informs what we deem is possible to do, which in turn, influences the results that we get.
Changing your life, at its heart, is about changing your perceptions and beliefs.
You always have a choice
The teachers in my schools were very traditional – it was either follow them, or get out of the room.
In life, one of the best skills you can ever learn, is how to make choices for yourself. How to filter what you see and experience, to come up with a decision that would get you closer to what you want to happen in your life.
Growing up, I had it all wrong. I thought the way to make choices in life was to make a choice that would please others – my parents, my teachers, my friends, persons in authority. Basically, everyone, except me.
What they don’t teach you in school, is that you always have a choice. Your life is yours, and the choices that you make has to be meaningful for you.
Is the choice you’re making out of your own free will, guided by your goals and purpose?
Because in the long run, it better be. Otherwise you risk ending up disillusioned, unable to make a choice on your own.
Despite what the situation is pressuring you to do, what other people tell you, or how conflicted your mind and feelings may be, you always have a choice.
How to deal with others
To be fair, this one’s a hard matter to learn. Probably because of all the different approaches and “models” people have when it comes to approaching interpersonal relationships.
What then happens is we learn to deal with people through trial and error – with how we cope with what happens to us, and with what we see and experience from our influences.
Not all of them, are effective.
What’s being taught in schools is the importance of getting along with others, not in learning how to be more articulate, and how to communicate your intentions and message clearly.
Which, is at the heart of how to get along with other people.
I’d like to believe, as we grow older, we get better at dealing with other people.
Along with the experience, comes lessons which I wish I could’ve experienced when I was still in school. Lessons such as:
Learning how to say no.
Learning how to say yes.
Not everyone understands the same way as you.
You can’t assume you know what people are thinking.
Nobody owes you anything.
We’re all going through something.
You shouldn’t care about what other people think or say about you.
Learning how to deal with others, is really a course in learning how to deal with yourself.
It’s okay to make mistakes
In school, it can be daunting to experiment, to try and defy, especially when your success and standing is determined by right or wrong marks, and by your teacher’s assessment of you.
All of which, is irrelevant in the real world.
There are no marks in the real world, only reasons or results.
Either you come up with reasons why you don’t do what you want to do, or you show up with results.
And the results come after having made mistakes, and learning from them.
That’s what school doesn’t teach you – that it’s okay to make mistakes, and to keep on learning from them. Traditional education insists on the notion that you can’t make mistakes, and that you have to prepare well for the exams to be perfect.
In the real world, the opposite is true for successful people – they start before they’re ready, and the make mistakes along the way, course-correcting when needed, to achieve success.
Try and try, learn and learn.
What are life lessons that should be taught in school? Please let me know in the comments below!