I own my education.
I realize that my personal development isn’t anyone’s responsibility as an adult. Even in elementary and high school, I still have to do the studying. I must do the passing. I make choices that require sacrifice. And I must become comfortable with those sacrifices.
I know books recommended to me in school are important; they’re needed to pass tests. But if I want to go beyond the curriculum assigned and take my learning to the next level, I know there’s more to learn. I need to create my own library customized to my interests, those areas I’m deeply passionate about.
I need to be a seeker, and seekers don’t sit back and wait for things to come to them. They seek knowledge out. And that’s how they find it.
I know I shouldn’t shy away from hard topics, those subjects that confuse me, make me feel uncomfortable. So I attack them instead. I go towards them, because I know those areas that create discomfort have hidden growth gems. They enhance me. I know this because I see what happens when people do not touch the discomfort and avoid it. They remain the same. The only way to grow is to do things never done, learn things never taught and experience things to gain wisdom.
I know this is a Declaration of Self-Education and not just of education. The two are different, both misunderstood.
I know education means to “bring forth” and that means something inside of me is being guided to emerge. It’s not about putting something in. So rather than seeking outward for things that will make me better, I should work on having experiences that will tap the potential already inside, so it can become applicable in the world. This means I shouldn’t be chasing things. I should be creating things and creation comes from within.
I know self-education is the personal quest to make this bringing forth happen; it’s my ownership of the process. It’s like being my own professor with an open space, a free environment where I can jump and clap and shake and dance and express myself in ways that might not fit the standard classroom. I am captain of this ship. But captains must be great at their rank and so I must become great at being a self-directed learner. And that means willpower.
The willpower to develop new habits. To become a conqueror of the self and overcome its self-destructive tendencies. To investigate every crevice of my being because there’s potential in every spot. I just need to learn how to manifest it.
My drive must be of a monstrous quality. Beastly. Unstoppable. Superlative. Powerful. Superhuman. Invincible. Indefatigable. It must be strong enough to withstand the external influences and keep me focused.
I know there will be many who attempt to distract me. They’ll want to hang out. Do things just to pass the time. Sometimes just to do nothing. And I know I have choices. I can choose to do that or not, the consequences I must accept.
But if I choose to become a master at my craft, I must first commit to that decision and act accordingly. Let the waves of life bring the circumstances most fruitful to that mission.
This is your mission. Your Declaration of Self-Education.