Self-Education Is Crushing America's Academic Model

In most schools around America, there are two types of students. There are those who study hard, get good grades (mostly A's and B's), are always making the honor roll and being recognized for their academic achievements. Then there are those students who kind of cruise along never making a concerted effort in their academic studies, don't have the best grades in the world and are repeatedly told if they want to be successful in life, they need to apply themselves more academically.

But then, something happens: The second type of student goes on to become a great success in the real world, while many of the top students do okay for themselves, but never really strike it big. Many times, the A students end up working for the B students, the B students work for the C students, and the D students dedicate the buildings. The most successful among us are not always the class valedictorians, but they are the best self-educated people on the planet.

Look at people like Richard Branson, Steve Jobs, Michael Dell and others. They didn't complete higher education and went on to be some of the most successful people in the world today.

An article from Lifehack today gives 10 reasons why C students are more successful after graduation, and some of the reasons given are spot on. Some of the reasons:

- They have their own definition of success
- They know how to leverage other people's abilities
- They prefer self-directed learning
- They are dreamers
- They are not submissive followers
- They question the validity of the academic system

Most people believe that formal education is the answer to acquiring wealth, yet very few academics are wealthy. They seek advanced degrees and certifications and are confounded when these things don't bring them riches. While the great ones are strong advocates of higher education, they don't believe it has much to do with acquiring wealth.

Most people trade time for money. The more successful people trade ideas that solve problems for money. Money flows like water from ideas. The middle class often scorns those who are successful out of a frustration of a lack of money, yet the answer to earning more than they can spend has been in their lap their whole lives. Ideas - it's such a simple idea that the majority misses it.

Champions dedicate their lives to greatness, and one of the ways they achieve this is through never-ending learning by self-education. Professional performers tend to believe formal education only teaches you how to learn, cope and manage yourself in the world as an adult. They believe real education begins after school lets out.

While the self-made rich respect the power of formal education, they usually don't associate it with building a financial empire. Many world-class performers have little formal education, and have amassed their wealth through acquisition and subsequent sale of specific knowledge. Formal education teaches people how to think in the world of commerce, but the rich rarely become wealthy trading time for money. The great ones operate from a non-linear mindset that keeps them perpetually in a consciousness of creative thought. There are no limits or boundaries, and the sole focus is on solving the seemingly unsolvable. In this non-linear school of thought, two and two no longer equal four and anything is possible.

The self-made rich use their brainpower in addition to the brainpower of others to hone in on specific solutions their counterparts have given up on. Meanwhile, most people are convinced master's degrees and doctorates are the way to wealth, mostly because they are trapped in the linear line of thought that holds them back from higher levels of consciousness. One of the greatest secrets of the rich lies in their ability to rely on their common sense and a street smart approach to problem solving. While most people make simple problems seem complex, world class performers make complex problems seem simple. Their ability to reduce any problem to an elementary level allows them to see solutions most academics wouldn't ever consider. The wealthy aren't interested in the means, only the end. Solve the problem, get compensated, and repeat the process until you're rich. End of story. This single-minded focus always pays off sooner or later, at which times the masses call it luck.

The Lifehack story says, "Our academic system itself became a factory to standardize all of the rising students to ensure they fit the desired mold." It's time to revamp the American education system because the world is moving to an entrepreneurial and innovation-driven economy, and the way we teach kids is these days is outdated and obsolete.

Next time your children come home with C grades on their report cards, it might not be such a bad thing. The ability to become successful and wealthy has nothing to do with formal education. Remember, formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you rich.