The conventional wisdom in our society says that if you go to University and get a degree then you are going to get a good-paying job and live a comfortable middle-class lifestyle.
But is this still true for most people?
Record levels of student loan debt, graduate underemployment and widespread career unhappiness suggest otherwise.
The Conventional Path:
We are all familiar with the conventional path to success, it goes something like this:
1. Spend 15-20 years of your life in a classroom obeying the rules, do all your homework and become adept at memorization to score high on tests.
2. Then use your high test scores to get into a prestigious University and study a high-paying profession: preferably medicine, engineering, finance, computer science or law.
3. Graduate in 4-6 years and then get a high-paying job serving a big institution in the government or start the long climb up the corporate ladder.
4. Finally, you sell the best, most productive years of your life to an employer and in exchange you get to secure a mortgage for a big house, drive a luxury car and purchase status symbols.
We all know this path. It’s synonymous with the American Dream. It’s the foundation myth of every consumer society. It’s perceived as safe and secure. Parents love it.
But what if this is not your dream?
What if you aren’t overly concerned with having the big house, the fancy car or obsessing over status symbols.
Maybe you’ve already followed the conventional path and realized that it isn’t the best path for you to fulfillment and meaningful work.
The reality today is that the University degrees that pay off in dividends are usually in highly competitive faculties where the only way to survive is to work extremely long hours to learn technical skills that are very hard to acquire.
If you can apply similar focus, discipline and work ethic to following your own self-directed learning path you can be just as successful without following a conventional path.
The Unschooling Option:
If you’re going to put so much focus and hard work into your education why not do-it-yourself, embracing life on your own terms? Instead of following everyone else on the crowded conventional path, you can distinguish yourself by hustling and actively developing and sharing your own creative talents.
The Internet is empowering a new generation of self-directed learners and social media creators driven by a burning desire to learn, create and explore. The accessibility of online learning provides an alternative path to sitting in a classroom and you can create it yourself by designing and following your own personalized learning curriculum.
That’s why I call it the creative path.
The Creative Path:
The Creative Path is an entrepreneurial path where you follow your curiosity and bring your passion and creative thinking to solving specific problems in the world while taking risks and learning to sell people on the value you will provide them.
There isn’t a conventional map like going to school to follow this path. Instead, your life becomes a learning adventure where you set your own goals, create your own structure and seek out mentors and accountability partners to help you along the way.
The reality is that people rarely ever find their dream job. Instead, they create it themselves.
It starts with prioritizing your self-education so you can actively shape your future by developing your creative talents and gifts into meaningful skills that you can use to serve others and earn a steady income from your efforts (or even better, multiple streams of income).
In my ebook Build A Personal Brand That Matters, I have created a social media guide for creating momentum in your life by developing your talents and interests to a level of skill and mastery where you can share them with others and work toward creating your dream job.
Thanks to the Internet, the rules of work and learning have changed. You don’t have to work in a cubicle or study in a classroom if you’re willing to develop the focus and discipline to get things done on your own. You don’t even have to live in a single place anymore now that Internet access is ubiquitous around the world.
The canvas of creative possibilities for how you live, work and learn is so much bigger than it was a decade ago. Today’s knowledge-based economy is driven by early adopters of technological innovations and this means it massively favors entrepreneurial individuals who take the initiative and follow their own lifelong learning path.
In Build A Personal Brand That Matters and the series of emails that you will receive when you sign up, I will guide you through the initial process of:
- Finding what motivates you through self-education and creating your own self-directed learning curriculum.
- Exploring your creative talents through side hustles and actively experimenting with your ideas.
- Developing a distinctive personal brand and building your own social media brand.
If you’re looking for a change, I hope this guide will be the spark that lights your fire and puts you on the path to running your own business or finding meaningful work in an innovative startup or creative organization.
The future belongs to the creative dreamers, thinkers and most importantly, the doers. I want to challenge you to dream even bigger and start learning your way to your dream job.
Download: Build A Personal Brand That Matters