Leading Self Learning Mindset Reflection Self awareness Uncategorized

No easy way out

The one strategy for success is to never stop learning and realize there are always more questions than answers.

The sh#t they never taught us in school.

That’s the title of a nineteen-hour audiobook I completed last week. Nineteen hours I spent while traveling abroad, driving around Prague, or at home when I didn’t feel like reading from a book.

The authors, two passionate Aussies, read through 100+ books, noted the most important lessons, and made an entertaining book out of it.

The book got my attention because of its title. 

First, titles with the word shit of fcuk in it (yes, deliberately written in full without other characters) create intrigue, whether you like it or not.

Second, while I enjoyed school for some part, my biggest lessons happened after school. University creates a general foundation and helps you find your way in life, but it primarily taught me where to look for stuff.

The real stuff is out there.

That brings me to the book’s main message.

Never stop learning.

It’s a simple, compelling, and perhaps obvious message, but it’s not that easy to stick to.

Ego and time get in the way.

Ego because many believe they know it all, walking around with an inflated ego. Time because many are too busy chasing their (money) goals.

When you’re busy managing your ego and chasing your fortunes, learning often gets in the way.

The borders of our comfort zones are often hard to cross.

Fear of the unknown. Fear of failing or losing face. We stick to what we know and do well. That’s where the rewards seem to be.

But that strategy hardly works forever. 

Suffering is inevitable for all of us. We can’t walk away from the challenges in life which put us to the test.

Setbacks often happen when we expect them the least. Therefore it makes sense to be prepared.

Preparing means accepting there’s learning in almost everything we do in life. Accepting that we’re forever a work in progress.

Even when we’re on top of a mountain and everything seems to be coming our way.

It won’t stay like that. 

Every mountain top catches a storm once in a while. 

In business, people will envy you for what you have accomplished and how successful you are. They will never tell you, but they will try to do better.

Better products or services appear. The economy takes a downturn. A pandemic like Covid suddenly tests your business model.

Success never lasts when not nurtured. 

In good and in bad times, it’s good to practice humility, show tolerance, and have patience with those who are less fortunate, gifted, or successful as you are. And show resilience.

  • Humility.
  • Tolerance.
  • Patience.
  • Resilience.
Those are the ingredients to prepare for the unknown.

So, how self-aware are you?

How many boxes do you tick when you look in the mirror? How many boxes would those who know you well tick?

Is there a gap? How big is the gap?

This is the stuff they never taught you at school.

The one strategy for success is to never stop learning and realize there are always more questions than answers.

There simply is no easy way out of the challenges life offers us. 

The best we can do is to accept these challenges, learn how to overcome our natural resistance, and find our path to fulfillment.

There’s no easy way out.

Learning is key.

Your turn: How many boxes do you tick? 

Do more of what makes you happy!


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Erikjan Lantink
Business & Leadership Coach

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