Creating Wealth Part 8 – Learning From The Classroom Of Life

by Patrick Liew on June 18, 2011

Once upon a time, I went to a neighborhood school to start my formal education. The school’s motto was, ‘Every Child Can Be Wealthy.’

My loving and caring teacher came to class and told us, “When you go out to the real world, you’ll realize money is one of the most important things in life.

“Therefore, we will be teaching you about money management until you complete your education. In fact, we will also coach you on how to manage your life so that you’ll be successful.

“In other words, you’ll learn how to achieve a higher level of well-being so that you and the people you love can enjoy a higher quality of life.

“We want to show you how to fulfill your highest calling to make our world a better home.”

My classmates and I jumped for joy. I applauded in appreciation of my teacher and gave him a big hug.

All over the room, hands were raised, including mine. I was taught to have a curious mind so that I would learn everything I needed to learn in life.

I was adventurous, inquisitive, and all set to take action. My teacher kept the learning spirit strong – and stronger by the day with every event and experience.

That morning, many important questions were raised. “How am I going to learn? And to learn how to learn?”

“How can I simulate real world experiences to make the lessons practical? How can I leverage on a team to enhance my learning experience?

“How can I learn from masters of different disciplines and from all over the world? How can I learn 24/7 and develop practical knowledge, attitude, skills and habits?

“How can I put myself on the fast-track to create wealth? How should I distribute my wealth for a good cause?” The questions came fast and furious.

My teacher would respond by posing the same question back to us. There would be a healthy discussion to find the best answers.

My teacher called this process, a tapping of collective wisdom. We have to connect, collaborate and co-create new learning experiences together.

My teacher always said, “We want you to express yourself fully. You must work through both your mind and emotion – alone and a team.

“This is to help you enhance your emotional intelligence.

“Ultimately, I’m here to help you maximize your potential. I’m here to help you develop your talents to the fullest.”

The beautiful thing I learned in my class was I had to be creative. I should not conform to any habitual ritual or routine.

In fact, I was motivated to find a compelling reason to drive myself to achieve success. I was encouraged to look for new breakthroughs to get better results.

I was inspired to be ever ready to put into practice what I’ve learned and to get better results.

Through it all, my teacher helped me to learn in my own unique way. It was fun and a pure joy to be in class.

In fact, learning became one of the best ways for me to relax, de-stress, and have fun.

Obviously, I was totally passionate about learning. I put in everything I could to ensure I improved in the fastest possible way.

My teacher made every lesson highly practical too. Listen to my teacher…

“This wealth-creation class is not designed to just help you earn a living. It is crafted to help you make your life count.

“So, we will offer you a broad education so as to cover every important area of your life. You need to live a full and complete life.

“I do not want you to specialize, for example, in science, arts or technical stream. You will then live with limited potential and possibilities for the rest of your life.

“By the way, this learning experience should be a lifelong process. You must learn from literally everything around you, including learning from people who are your enemies and competitors.

“To do so, you must switch on your learning antenna. You need to be conscientious of and to reflect on all the wonderful lessons that life is teaching you all the time.

“You can learn anywhere, anytime, and from anybody, and in infinite number of ways.

“Equally important, I want you to seek out successful and wealthy people to learn from them.

 “Please do not learn by the rote method. We don’t expect you to remember the information.

“We want you to learn how to learn. Analyse the information and create new knowledge to help others to be wise.

“There will not be any examination to test your memory. Instead, we will monitor and measure your learning progress.

“Just as the world is renewing itself, you must redesign yourself on an ongoing basis.

“Ultimately, you must develop new competencies to achieve better results.

“Oh! Before I forget, “ She smiled and said, “I have to catch you ‘copying’.

“How can you be wealthy if you don’t learn from one another and improve on it? You can call it market research or practical intelligence.

“One last thing, you have to fail if you want to graduate from the course.”

The class was shocked when we heard it. However, I learned to have complete information before making a judgment.

“Life is dotted with failures – and sometimes they happened not because of any fault of yours. Therefore, you must learn how to fail.

“You need to successfully fail your way to success .

“Failure is one of the best feedback and learning experiences. It is one of your best teachers.

You must learn how to respond positively to and leverage on it.

“Through whatever painful corrections and transformations, you can turn every challenge into an opportunity to be wealthy.

“The classroom of the world is waiting for you.”

After the exciting opening address, the class went into a total euphoria. It was a brilliant start.

The course became even better once it was rolled out. By the time I graduated, I knew how to manage my life.

I had the skills to create and manage money effectively. I was on my way to becoming absolutely wealthy,

I continued to learn throughout my life. I lived happily ever after.

I hope you have enjoyed reading this fairy tale.

I wished this story was true. I wished it did happen.

I wished my parents had taught me. I wished my teachers had shown me the way.

I wished my bosses had guided me. I wished some experts had mentored me.

I wished I knew how to be rich and wealthy.

One day, I stopped wishing. I endeavoured to make the wishes come true.

I started on my wealthy-creation journey when I stopped wishing and started taking action.

It dawned upon me I could not change the past but I could make a decision to claim the future. In fact, my past has given me everything I needed to shape my destiny.

I have been prepared for the periods in my life when I need to go back to basics – again and again. I can un-learn, learn and relearn what is necessary to become rich and wealthy.

Another breakthrough happened when I realized all learning begins and ends with self-learning.

All transformations start with a deep desire to learn. Then, I must allow the learning to change my life.

Subsequently, I had another enlightenment. All true learners are also trainers. They first learn to train themselves and then, they commit themselves to train others.

The more I train others the more I will learn. When I inspire others to change their lives, my life will be changed too.

Recently, I had another awakening. I don’t have to learn, follow by taking action, and then go and train others.

I can learn, take action, and train at the same time, all the time.

There are lessons everywhere. As I am learning, I can take positive action. At the same time, I can constantly train myself and the people around me.

Learning becomes a dynamic 24/7 process. The world becomes truly my classroom.

Here’s an exercise for you. If you are serious about becoming a lifelong learner and to achieve optimal success, read the story at the beginning of this Love Note again.

First, as a student, and determine the best way for you to learn.

Then, as a trainer, and explore how you can ensure the highest level of learning experience for yourself.

I’ll see you in the classroom of life. You can be one of my teachers.

Class begins now…



P/S: Together with some friends, we have started Junior Achievement, a non-profit organization to try and create a ‘mini-version’ of the class mentioned in the above fictional story.


We train school children in life skills, skills they need to survive and succeed in life. These skills include wealth management, leadership, entrepreneurship, and other skills.


Please check us out on


Can you volunteer a minimum of 6 hours per year to help train the next generation?


 Last year, we trained 4000 children. This year, we hoped to train 11000 children, and eventually – with your help – all our children.




Wealth                                 Wealth refers to the condition of well-being. It includes my physical, emotional, social and environmental well-being

Wealthy                               Having the resources to help others and myself live a meaningful, exciting and fulfilling life in a healthy environment

Asset                                     Anything that grows wealth

Liability                                 Anything that decreases wealth

Rich                                        Having the money and material possessions to achieve the same aspiration for being wealthy

Money                                 Money is the instrument to facilitate transaction of products and services. It is a measurement of the results of a Wealth Plan

Wealth Plan                        An effective and an ever-improving blueprint to create wealth


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