“If you are planning for a year, sow rice; if you are planning for a decade, plant trees; if you are planning for a lifetime, educate people.” – Chinese Proverb

Another Chinese proverb this brings to mind is, “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach him how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” 

Both proverbs advocate imparting knowledge or teaching self-sufficiency to plan for more success in one’s lifetime. 

Education doesn’t only have to happen through an institution or online, or for a fee. In fact, education happens all the time; we simply need to be more mindful of the opportunities and more intentional in our response.

All types of education matter and informal education often has the upper hand in making knowledge more accessible, particularly for those who don’t have the funds required for the option of formal education. Regardless, informal education is more likely to be based on real-life experiences and examples of learning. 

It could be as simple as you sharing your passion and knowledge, and teaching a family member or friend how to improve their well-being through, for example, exercise or meditation, or cooking nutritious meals instead of spending money on fast-food. 

Even simpler, it could be you recognising a passion in someone else and supporting them in developing it for themselves, which will optimise their well being. This could be through internet research, reading books, or signing up for a course.

With an emphasis on well-being and the will to continually develop, both for oneself and others, there is always a way in which to gain knowledge and further education for all. 

Bear in mind that this will be different for everyone. As Einstein said, ”Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” 

This concept is precisely what was advocated by Sir Ken Robinson, a creativity expert, author, and international education adviser who pioneered the need to rethink our education system to recognise multiple intelligence types and nurture (rather than undermine) creativity in order for everyone to reach their full potential.

He explains the importance of this in his iconic 2006 TED talk: Do schools kill creativity?, which remains the most popular TED talk ever to date.

Let’s use these examples to impart knowledge wherever possible, enable education for all insofar as we can and strive for our own personal best and that of those around us by tapping into our creativity and connecting so that we all, as a human race, can grow and thrive.

We at WellsFaber can help you plan to this end. Speak to us and together, let’s start planning for a lifetime.