Part of growing up is learning what you can and cannot get away with. I remember trying every trick in the book to get out of studying or doing my homework. My father never fell for my cunning plans and I could never figure out why. It wasn’t until I grew up myself that I realized the reason – that he had done just what I had when he was young. Too often children think parents or teachers can’t understand their lives; that the world has changed so much that their elders can’t relate to them. But the truth is that adults have been there and done that.
While education techniques and teaching materials have drastically changed in the past 30 years, students are still students. They want to hang out with their friends, explore their world, and enjoy their lives. And that’s a good thing, but how much time do we let pass us by – too much. I know, I was there once. We tend to do what we need to do to get by, the bare minimum.
Unfortunately it wasn’t until years later that I realized what great opportunities I had been given. Sure there were some classes that were a waste of my time but my mistake was that I didn’t find a way to put that time to good use. Time is something that slips through our fingers and without knowing it the years fly by. That’s why the minimum isn’t acceptable for me anymore. If I can learn 5 new kanji characters a day then I should aim for 10 or 20. If I can read 50 pages a day then I need to go for 100. Pushing ourselves to achieve more is never a bad thing, in fact it’s a great thing. Amazingly, in time, the number that we once considered as a challenge becomes our minimum because our ability has grown which means that the bar needs to be pushed that much higher.
Strive to be the best and we’ll all be amazed at how much we can achieve.