The universal truth is beyond question – the only people who excel are those who have decided to do so.
- Stop Stealing Dreams, Seth Godin
We live in a society where University graduates are an increasing norm; qualifications and certificates from chartered institutes are becoming a standard part nearly all professions; you are often required to participate in continuous education through work, not necessarily for promotions, but simply to keep your job and your current pay. The qualifications required keeps going up in a market where jobs are not only scarce, but insecure.
The security was an illusion for the most part anyway. But now, in the current economic climate that has remained “current” for about five years, it is an illusion that is stripped away from all but those who would rather remain ignorant.
Traditional qualifications may get your CV read, but they don’t guarantee a prosperous future.
So what does?
Well, that’s the good news. YOU.
With every change and every evolution comes revolution. We are going through major global economic crisis that is changing the entire structure of our economy. It may not be obvious to Average Joe buried in his routine life. But it is happening, and it is obvious, if you would only look it.
Average labour is available cheaper than ever. Modern communication devices mean businesses are no longer restricted to one location. You hear the complains, “Those bloody foreigners are taking our jobs away.” I am sure at some point, you or your friends and family have uttered those very words. Okay, so it sucks if you are laid off, because the call centre in India is much cheaper.
But now I want you to think as the CEO of that business. What if you were sitting in that chair? Then suddenly, it becomes the right decision. Your job is to look after the interest of the business, to make sure it creates profit for shareholders, to make sure that the business survives and even grows in the difficult market. That means, cost saving. That means, using cheapest available labour – especially if that labour also provides same if not better skill base than what you already have.
But it still leaves people without jobs. People who thought they had job security because they worked hard, showed up on time, and were loyal to the company they worked for. Now, they are back in the market, competing against younger and more qualified people. It’s like going on a date after you’ve been married for twenty years.
Even if you are not in that situation, it’s time to be armed and ready. You can have security – the kind of security that no one can take away from you, no matter what happens to the market. The kind of security that you have control over because it’s in your power.
It’s the security that comes from self-education.
BENEFITS OF SELF-EDUCATION
You have the freedom to seek knowledge you desire. There is no set curriculum to follow. No one is forcing you to become well-rounded and making you learn things you don’t want to learn. You can choose to be a polymath, on your own terms.
With self-education you can be armed with skills and experience before you require it. Whether you have a set career plan, a general interest in learning something, or fear of stability in your current work, you can teach yourself skills and start creating a portfolio which will be available as a proof of credentials. This is a far more efficient and less stressful approach than being caught out unprepared when your situation changes.
Abundance of Resources
We live in a golden age of information. If you want to learn, resources available are endless and often free or cheap. There is no excuse for lack of learning; merely lack of willingness.
Universities such as Stanford and MIT are putting up vast amounts of their courses online. Resources such as Khan Academy and Udemy are empowering people in the new age of learning. People like Scott H. Young are proving how learning can be a passionate endeavour and are guiding people in hacking the system, in the best possible sense of the phrase.
Inspire love of learning
There are some people, including myself, who come out of education systems with love of learning. Whether it’s a make-up of our personality, our home environment, or good teachers – but we are the lucky ones. For the vast majority, educational institutions wipe out love of learning. People think they only have to learn to pass the exams to do whatever they need to do in life. There is no learning for learning’s sake. I know many people who never read a book voluntarily, and even when they are forced to read one for work, they do it grudgingly and as a chore.
Getting used to self-education can show you that learning is a powerful activity that can and should inspire a passionate response. You can learn what you like, how you like it, and when you like it. By doing so, you create your own future, and instead of waiting for the world to give you options, you empower yourself to create your own options.
Still not convinced?
Perhaps you think you don’t need further education because you graduated at the top of your class, or are already successful. Maybe you speak several languages. Maybe you have read all the classics.
Here is the truth: Those things, you current achievements, are results of your past efforts. They are the efforts that have brought you where you are today. They are not going to take you any further. They may not even be enough to keep you in your current position for long.
So what about tomorrow?
What are you doing to make your future as good as it is today if not better?
What are you learning? How are you growing?
If you are not growing, you are dying. Your knowledge is rapidly dwindling in proportion to changing world. Your memory and mental abilities are being affected as your grow older and do nothing to exercise those brain cells.
No Self Education DOES NOT EQUAL Stagnation
No Self Education EQUALS Death
Death of who you have the potential to be.
Bit strong maybe, but that’s because I feel so strongly about this. That’s why I created Kaizen Journaling Academy, to promote lifelong learning. I think continuous learning is paramount. Not just for earning a living, but for your personal and professional growth. It’s important so you don’t stagnate. It’s important so you are continuously introduced to new ideas, challenged, and made to think.
Because I believe in its important, I am prepared to put my effort and time where my mouth is.
If you guys are interested, I will create a free course to help you get started with self education through journaling. That’s right. Absolutely free. But I don’t want to waste my time if you don’t want to use it. If you want that free course, enter your name and email address in the box below.
Don’t worry, you won’t get any other messages or double subscriptions if you have already subscribed to the blog. The only messages you will get will be about self-education course. If there is enough interest, I will create a free course just for you.