You may be in your twenties and regretting you didn’t go to college. Or, maybe you’re in your forties — stuck in a job you hate and wishing you had had the resources to go in a different direction. Whatever your age may be, you’re probably thinking that it’s way too late to go back to school and get more education.
But you’re wrong! Read on to learn why it’s never too late get educated at any point in your life. You’ll be happier, feel more empowered, and finally get what you want. Life is way too short to be stuck in a job that brings you down. Let us see how you can course-correct.
Why Education Matters
First off, let’s see why all this is important. There are many reasons why education matters to your life today – both psychologically and professionally.
When you work on your education, you become more competitive and more marketable in your chosen field. As technology keeps changing rapidly, so does a required skillset in many different fields. That is why you always need to keep track of all the changes and update your own skills and knowledge. Imagine for a second that you are an employer. Who would you rather hire – an employee who only meets the basic requirements or someone with an additional set of skills? The answer is quite an obvious one.
Pursuing education also benefits you psychologically. You feel more fulfilled, happier, more confident and empowered in your abilities. Plus, when you are developing yourself personally, that spills over into your business outlook. You are more energized and ready to tackle the day’s office problems. Whether it’s learning a new language or going to a new technology class or even going back to college, you will undoubtedly reap the benefits of your effort.
Now, did you know that most adults wish they had learned more skills when their brains were younger and they had more time to explore a new direction? Although it is easier to memorize things earlier in life, age brings more responsibility, experience, wisdom, and a better capacity for understanding. Therefore, there isn’t a single reason why you shouldn’t pursue an education regardless of how old you are.
Are You Ready to Learn? Here’s What You Can Do
Now that you know why education matters at any age, let´s see what you can do to acquire it. If you think you may be ready to go back to school or just to take one class or course, here’s what you should think about to meet your goals:
Be Realistic About Your Situation
First of all, you need to see where you are, assess your current skills, and think about what is it that you actually want to achieve.
Ask yourself: What do I want to learn? What do I need to learn? If I could go in any direction, which way would that be? Would I launch a startup or a new firm? Would I become a freelancer? How much do I already know? Do I need a new skill for my current job? Do I just want to have another hobby? Learn a new language for pleasure?
When you answer these questions, you will have a clearer picture of what to do next.
Plan Your Track
Now that you know what you want, you need to determine how exactly you will get it. This stage is really critical because nothing can be done without good planning.
Let´s say you want to expand your computer skills. What do you need to do in order to achieve that? What kind of training does it require? Do you need to get licensed, to pass an exam or to have a certain degree?
To help yourself, make a list of the steps you need to take, along with the budgetary constraints that will be put on you to accomplish them. Set up a timeline for meeting each of those steps and get going.
Explore Your Options
A good plan involves exploring your options, and today there is really a plethora of opportunities for education – both online and offline.
When it comes to the online world, the Internet abounds in many cheap (and even free) resources – educational websites, downloadable apps, MOOC’s (massive open online courses), LMS’s (learning management systems), and many others. You can even earn a Master’s degree online now! These options may save you both time and money, so make sure to explore them properly.
If you prefer to get educated in a good old physical environment, there are always industry conferences, seminars, evening or weekend courses, and other options at your disposal. You just need to find the one that suits you best.
When you have realized what you want and how to get it, the only thing left for you to do is – go for it! You will probably be happy and excited about your decision, so build on that momentum and put your plan in action.
Don’t get discouraged by anything along the way, even if you are the oldest person in your group. Being the oldest often means being the wisest, so be proud of that fact. Whatever the challenge you might face, just cultivate patience, stay optimistic, and eventually you will reach your goals.
What you need to get an education do is figure out what you want, be realistic about your plan, write out your steps, explore all options, and remain optimistic throughout the process. Although this may seem challenging, it will eventually pay off and you will be a happier person, both professionally and privately.
In conclusion, remember that it’s never too late to pursue an education – even if you are a hundred years old. There isn’t a time when acquiring knowledge and skills is a bad idea.
As Mark Twain once said, “Age is an Issue of mind over matter: If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”
Author Bio: Joe Peters is a Baltimore-based freelance writer and an ultimate tech enthusiast. When he is not working his magic as a marketing consultant, Joe enjoys spending time with his family, reading about latest tech gadgets and binge-watching his favorite TV shows. You can reach him @bmorepeters