I grew up in three different continents, and three different school systems, filled with people from very different societies, backgrounds and expectations. Throughout it all, my view on my education, and my desire to learn, was only able to change if I decided to, regardless of the quality of the teacher, my age, or the content of the class, which completely goes against a lot of content out there emphasizing the importance of these things.
Today we see education as a priceless toolkit to acquire, in order to be successful, knowledgeable, respectable etc. We all know it is important, and we all want to believe that we truly care about it, but in my experience, education system has made education itself stagnant.
From the beginning of this journey, we are told that we must work hard, sacrifice time, effort, and money (for those who can afford to do so) to earn recognition, success, and more money. The journey itself will suck, but those that do well, will be rewarded. This notion, perhaps, is the biggest roadblock to education in the first place, or at least was in my case.
I never took my education seriously, and was a bad student in every way, until around the beginning of this school year. I had good teachers, bad teachers, topics I found interesting, and topics I could not keep my eyes open for. I have been told about how much I should care since the age of three. Yet, never really did. Why?
Because my incentives, and the environment was contradictory to all the fairy tales I was being told about education. I only had incentives to get good grades, and never to learn. I never had incentives to explore beyond the content put in front of me, and intellectual curiosity did not seem to be of much value, or at least not nearly as much as knowing how to please teachers, or shortcuts to memorizing big loads of information, that I knew I will forget in the next 48 hours.
I can confidently say I have learned more in the last year, than I have all previous years put together. The only difference was the amount of time I spent on retrospection, that led me to the conclusions that went against everything I was used to. I had to spend time repairing the damage the education system inadvertently caused me, in order to convert learning back into a hobby, and an enjoyable process. After feeling the fulfillment that knowledge could give me, there was no going back, and I had to reevaluate everything, from how I should pick my friends, to my priorities and goals. Since then, I have been happier, sharper, and clearer about my direction than ever, not to mention the countless opportunities I have been presented with as a direct result.
Formal learning has unfortunately failed me. I have attended private, and public schools, and yet neither had the focus on personal development that I needed to arrive at the mindset I have today, which I believe will bring me opportunities I would never get otherwise. I believe a person that is motivated, can teach themselves the content of any class or textbook, more effectively, and a lot faster than any teacher. I am all too aware that nearly all the expertise and skills needed to succeed at my future occupation will be taught on the job.
One of the requirements for this post is to list five sources, yet I cannot do that in good conscience, as there are no sources that have absolute credibility. But I can instead list five rules and principles I will live by regarding my education and development:
-I will only make claims in topics and events I can make an informed decision on, that I have taken time to research and analyze
-I will always approach news with a healthy amount of skepticism, whether the claim is to my liking or not
-I will not allow emotions to take over my rationale
-I will never learn for others, and for the sake of any benefit other than my desire to learn
-I will never deceive myself into thinking I know enough