I love my mum and dad, and could quite easily live with them for the rest of my life. But for some of you, the thought of that would make you cringe. But I must say, financial freedom is liberating, empowering and something we all strive for and hope to achieve one day. I don’t think many of you would answer ‘no’ to the question, do you want to be a millionaire?

However, an article published in the New York Times writes, ‘one in five people in their 20’s and early 30’s is currently living with his or her parents, and 60 percent of all young adults receive financial support from them’.


How come?

Yong Zhao, the author of World Class Learners, suggests it’s because when students are leaving school, they have an ’employee mindset’, meaning they are waiting for jobs and looking for opportunities as opposed to creating their own.

How do we make the change from employee mindset?

Create work that matters. That’s it.

We know that our world is more connected than ever, and it is common for people to move all over the world for different jobs or someone to work online anywhere in the world for a lot cheaper than a local person. So, instead of waiting for opportunities and jobs to to be available, we can shift our focus on creating our own.

The ideal school is no longer a physical campus, meaning we can learn from anyone at anytime and our work has the potential to reach wide amounts of audiences. The world is our oyster, if you will.

Students and teachers can work together to shift the focus from mastering content, to actually creating work that matters and make a difference in our communities.

Expand your audience

‘Work that is created for the teacher alone is wasted work.’ Yong Zhao. 

To be excellent and successful, you have to make an impact. Not jump through hoops and create work you think your teacher will like and get a good mark for. It’s bigger than that, and to disagree is only limiting your potential to be great.

Your work matters, you are heard and your voice matters in the world, not just in your classroom. That is the greatest gift a teacher can give you. Just as rewarding it is for a teacher to see the impact students are having on the world now, not wondering where they will end up or what great things they will achieve once they leave school.

Utilise your strengths and follow your passion

Recongise your strengths and passions and use these same strengths and interests to serve and help others. Because, we need each other. We all don’t grow our own food and package it, we all don’t know how to fix and service cars and we all don’t have a degree in medicine to help us get better when we are sick. We don’t need to, because everyone earns a living by working at jobs that serve someone else in one way or another. Our society is literally built on serving each other, and we are good at it. It’s our purpose.

Questions to help you get started

What is your passion?

What opportunities for change can you see that you can create a possible solution?

What strengths do you have that you can use?

What peers can you convince to become a business partner with you?

If you have an opportunity at school to create projects that allow you to follow your passion and strengths, then use this amazing gift to do something great. Or, if you are not at school and don’t have a teacher giving you this opportunity, be like me and create your own. Follow what lights you up and you will naturally create work that matters.

Your results may be a wonderful success or a complete failure. Either way, skills such as resilience, reflection, perseverance, confidence, communication and collaboration have been practiced and developed.  I think these skills are much more beneficial than skills of memory retention or following instructions that are commonly the focus in one-size-fits-all school assignments.


I have the responsibility as a teacher to be unrelenting in insisting that student work contributes and betters the community. It is up to me to make sure my students have the opportunity to make a difference.


Success stories

‘Starting your own business is not that hard,’ Ryan Hickman, now 7 years old is the president of his own company and has made 21, 000 thousand dollars.



Pep talk

Whether you are a student, teacher, 7 years old, a plumber or a stay at home mum, know that you are destined for greatness and you are a part of something bigger. You have something no one else can offer, and it is your responsibility to work out what that is. You deserve the success it will bring you once you discover what lights you up.

Keep learning. Trust yourself. Surround yourself with positive people and make a difference in this world. This lifetime is temporary, so live larger.

Imagine a school where all learning was centered around projects that positively impacted the community…

Imagine if Steve Jobs didn’t follow his passions and interest… or worse, he only submitted his ideas to a teacher!! 

Featured image of Jaysea Devoe from @seavibesyoga Instagram.


  1. expanding your audience is a great idea! and instead of waiting for opportunities to come to you, make an effort and create those opportunities for yourself, this will get you further in success.


  2. My passion is maths. I could start up my own business in private tutoring. I am good at maths, which will help me with tutoring people in need of help. I can convince my friends in my extension math class to become my business partners.


  3. Hi Emily, I love your blog and wanted to share my answers to your questions
    What is my passion?
    My passion is playing instruments, such as the piano, guitar and ukulele

    What opportunities for change can you see that you can create a possible solution?
    I believe music is a form of way to relieve stress.

    What strengths do you have that you can use?
    My interest and strong passion towards music and playing musical instruments.

    What peers can you convince to become a business partner with you?
    Others who share the same interest and passion as me towards music.


  4. What what is your passion?
    My passion is playing soccer after school with my good teammates as we all get along and have lots of fun learning and understanding the game we love.

    What opportunities for change can you see that you can creat a possible solution?
    Stress less, try and relax before I get to a test, change the way I study

    What strength do you have that you can use?
    I can go and ask the teachers to stay back and help me. Re-explain something if I don’t get it, ask them to teach me way to relax before an exam or test

    What peers can convince to become a business partner
    My friends because I know them well and can trust them


  5. My passion is music. I could benefit society by setting up online community for students who enjoy music. They can share their passions with each other and learn about other aspects of music they may not be familiar with.


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