There are lots to learn from people around us. A person learns less from books and education than by personal experience. Of course that doesn’t mean that you should stop going to school or reading books. What I really meant is practical experience, lessons of life.
I was the topper in my under grad school but when I went for a summer internship, I was surprised how workers in a factory who probably never went to school knew things better than me. They did not require books. They do not know the chemical composition of each and every substance but they knew to make the product well depending on the specification provided.
My second major in under grad was in Information Technology. But before I joined work, I hadn’t written a proper java program on my own. College education was more about theoretical concepts (which is important) but less focused on practical work. I am not implying that all college education is like that. There are some very good institutions which encourage on creativity. But my real knowledge on how to build software came from my first job.
Apart from work, we learn a lot of lessons about life from experience. Starting from our mother’s recipe for our favorite food to learning how to put a nail on the wall, we learn everything by looking at our elders from home. We learn to share or defend ourselves from our siblings.
As we grow and leave our home, we come across different kinds of people. We learn about their culture, about their hobbies, habits and ways of doing things. Sometimes we like them and adopt them while sometimes we get annoyed. We learn to deal with problems, failures, and successes.
We learn to make money, we learn to spend them, and we learn to lose them and then rebound and make them all over again. We then learn to save them and build an empire out of it.
At work, we learn how some people can get things done without working hard while we meet people who do not care about money or fame but focus on just their job. We learn to be humble and to be honest at the same time we also learn to move forward.
At each and every step of our life there is something new that we learn. From being taken care off as a child to taking care of yourself during adulthood, to taking care of our family and our parents in their old age. Life constantly provides us new ways to learn things.