Independent Learning Always Trumps Institutional Education

I have friends who went to ivy league schools and still live at home with their parents, unemployed.

I also have friends who never received their degree and are far more successful than the majority of college graduates.

Institutionalized education is an altogether meaningless indicator for success in the world, something we have seen proven time and time again.  With that said, our society has created a normalized value that you “must” follow a certain path to achieve success – the path of being educated in groups and taught in heavily structured settings.

The institutions, organizations and corporations surrounding us reinforce it.  But the reality is your background in higher education matters little.

Want to go farther in life and have an insane edge over the rest of the business world?  My advice is to you is to unlearn the structure you learned in institutional and higher education.

Structure is fine if you want to be a worker bee and blend in, not if you want to creatively bend the rules to your advantage.  I have a degree from a great college, however I actually owe none of my successes or talents to that degree.  Throughout life I have read, studied and internalized the most vital information and skill sets through independent learning and self-teaching.

I learned early on through observation that people who are exceptionally talented at something devoted arduous hours to elevate their skills to a level far ahead of their peers.  But I could also tell it was an enjoyable journey getting there for those people and they were better for it.

Group settings for learning always bored me and in fact still do.  They do not present an efficient learning structure, the pace is far too slow.  It is efficient from a teaching perspective, not from a learning perspective.  Group learning also does not afford the ability for you to play, experiment and fail – all huge for advancing your skills in an area.  Failure is necessary, something that institutionalized learning on the whole refuses to allow.  In fact, independent learning is all about failing like crazy until you find the right path, the antithesis of traditional education.

Your internal drive and motivation for success, for learning and for making a positive impact on the world are all that matter.  IQ doesn’t matter, having “gifts” doesn’t matter, and a graduate degree cum lade proves nothing.  Personal accomplishments and projects that you spearhead and create yourself from the ground up are what prove true creativity and problem solving ability.

Want to learn something new today?  It’s so easy – the web presents you with oceans of information on everything possible, and I guarantee there is already a community of people trading tips and building a knowledge-base on your subject of choice.

Savvy individuals use the web as an infinite well of knowledge to sharpen their skill sets at their craft of choice, or experiment with a new path.  For the first time in human civilization, all knowledge is at your fingertips, instantly accessible.

Think of the scene from the Matrix when Neo is able to plug in and directly download any concept/ability he wishes.  You have the exact same opportunity right now.  You can choose to use it and broaden your horizons, or you can choose to ignore it and merely be entertained.  The only things you’ll need are time and determination.

You can go further on your own than you can in any group setting – your mind is that powerful and you have all the tools you need right now.  It is up to you.

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