When I was a kid I knew about college. My parents both went to the University of Minnesota (and I still turned out okay). Dartmouth College was across the street from my high school in Hanover, New Hampshire. Everyone from Hanover High School seemed to go to college. There was never a question of whether or not I would go to college. It was just a matter of where. And whether or not I would get kicked out.
After high school I went to the University of Wisconsin. I earned bachelor’s degrees in journalism and psychology. Following college I had many friends who did even more schooling. They got master’s degrees, went to law school or medical school.
I did none of those things. Instead I began to self-educate. I began reading books, not just for entertainment, but for knowledge. I subscribed to various magazines and devoured them monthly. Eventually I learned that devouring reading materials does not mean that you actually eat them. Once I discovered that I began enjoying reading materials significantly more.
There’s Something Happening Here
I started noticing an interesting phenomenon. When I read a book, article or blog that I found valuable there would be a reference to another book, article, blog, vlog or podcast. I would add that new reference to my list of materials to explore. Then, not only would I find great value in that material, I would find another reference to other worthwhile material to explore.
One Thing Leads To Another.
I began compiling a rich list of books, authors, blogs and podcasts that continuously linked me to even more valuable new material. Like the required set of coursework you must take to earn a college degree, my self-directed readings began creating a unique and valuable path forward. Like my own yellow brick road.
Chains and Change
As I followed this chain of knowledge it changed my life in profound ways. I didn’t know it at the time, but my chain of knowledge created my coursework for entrepreneurship. Some of it was inspirational. Some of it was instructional. But each link added profound value.
Boarding The Entrepreneurship
In 2015 I began planning the launch of my own advertising agency. My readings and self education prepared me well for the process. I didn’t need an MBA. Or a business coach. I just needed my own self-directed chain of knowledge. And action.
In the spring of 2016 I launched my own business called The Weaponry. At the same time, I launched this blog to help others build their chain of knowledge.
I have discovered that to accomplish great and difficult feats you don’t have to go back to school, like Rodney Dangerfield or Billy Madison. You simply have to keep adding links to your own chain.
Here are some sources that have provided strong links in my chain of knowledge.
- Rich Dad. Poor Dad.
- The Alchemist
- Think And Grow Rich.
- The E-Myth
- TheCash Flow Quadrant
- 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.
- Everything by John C. Maxwell
- Everything by Jim Collins
- Everything by Daniel Pink
- The Hard Thing About Hard Things
- Talent Is Overrated
- Delivering Happiness
- Call Me Ted
- Pour Your Heart Into it
- The One Thing
- How I Built This
- Bigger Pockets
- Side Hustle School
- Open For Business
- Fast Company
To become the best You that you can be build your own chain of knowledge. Direct your own education. Add to it every day. It will empower you to do great things. Things that you alone are uniquely qualified to do. And please share what you discover with others. Because like Billy Madison, I still have a lot left to learn.
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