stop asking me about school


Earlier this week, yet another individual came up to me and asked why I'm not in school. This conversation happens every month or so, usually with the same three or four individuals. Gotta love their persistence, right? These unsolicited conversations go the same way every time.

"Why aren't you in school? If you don't go to college, you'll have less opportunities. College is a non-negotiable." When folks voice these concern, I'll admit that it does make me question things. I'll wonder if I need to man up and start buying textbooks or I'll think, "Geez, if everyone is going to school, but maybe I should go, too." But then I think about all of the cool things that I'm involved in and how I don't need to get approval from an institution. This blog, Around the Table, and all the other irons in the fire - I don't wait for permission, I just do them. And while I'm definitely learning as I go, I’m starting to see some of these projects make a profit. 

After a couple of events, our team made finally money with the last dinner. More importantly, all of our collaborators were compensated, too. Would I have made a profit sooner if I had gone to school? Maybe, but I'm a hands-on learner and life is the best teacher. Plus, doing things my way makes me feel very engaged in my life, if that makes sense?

I brought up the fact that Around the Table is becoming profitable with this pro-education individual, but they didn't seem to care. I think their focus on education was blinding them to the fact that I've found a way to make money in a creative way. 

I wanted to tell them that the Internet has leveled the playing field and made (once) inaccessible information accessible to everyone. I understand that at one point filmmakers/photographers/creatives needed to go to college to learn their craft, but that era's over. It’s 2018, not 1968. We have Youtube and Skillshare now. The Web has given us the gift of instant education!

Personally, I have no plans of becoming a doctor, lawyer, or diplomat. In my mind, that means I don't need a degree. In fact, the job I want isn't even a job you can get a degree in. Unless "Director of Experiences" is a field of study? Hmmm, doubtful. We all have our own ideas of what success looks like and I personally don't equate a degree with success. Some people do, but I don’t. 

Right now, I'm using my talents, abilities, and connections to build something fun, interesting, and lucrative. School's the last thing on my mind and it's sort of a bummer when people ignore my success and steer the conversation away from it. So, please, stop asking me about school. It's not on my to-do list. I’m too busy finding interesting ways to make money. *mic drop*

In closing, I'm linking to three things. The first is the book Linchpin by Seth Godin. This book fundamentally changed the way I think about all the stuff. He gives (eloquent) language to much of what I think and feel. Then below are two videos. First one's funny and insightful while the second one's more straightforward. Hope these help! 

Did you go to school? Or did you take a different route? Are you happy with where you are? I'd love to hear your opinion on all of this!