Education · Entrepreneurship · Leadership

My Education Journey

My education started out in a very typical way.  Like most Americans, I was “educated” on the conveyor belt until the age of 18.  From kindergarten through eighth grade I attended a parochial school.  This proved to be a blessing, of sorts, primarily because I received a Christian education.  I was privileged to go to a school where we studied God’s Word, everyday.  This proved to be extremely important as I strayed from God’s path for my life, in my 20’s.  Without that foundation that was built on God’s Word from the ages of 5-14, I would not be writing this right now.  My life would look totally different.

After I left St. Matthew’s Lutheran school, I headed off to the public high school in Oconomowoc, WI.  Here I received a very typical conveyor belt schooling experience.  Teachers cared very little, homework was pointless, and nobody wanted to be there…especially the teachers.  I did have a couple of really good teachers in my 4 years of high school, but most were just there punching the clock.  Overall my high school experience was pretty forgettable, except for the friends I met there.

I don’t remember ever really being challenged in high school, or having a teacher taking an interest in me and really pointing out areas where I was gifted.  Overall high school was pretty easy for me, I could sleep through the classes, not do any homework, and still ace the quizzes and tests.  That wasn’t because I was special, or even super smart, it was because that’s how easy and unchallenging conveyor belt schooling is.

After high school I got a job in construction.  The biggest lesson this taught me is that I don’t want to spend my life working for someone else.  So I started my first business when I was 22.  I started a landscaping and lawnmowing business with one of my brothers.  This business got off to a very slow start,  but over the next 11 years I learned many lessons about business, life, finances, the importance of communication, and most of all the difference leadership makes.  Mostly because my brothers and I lacked alot of the necessary leadership skills we needed to really succeed at a big level.  The biggest lesson I learned from this experience is the devastating effect a leadership void has on any situation in life.  When I left this business in 2009, my entire life was in shambles.  I was reeling from a lifetime of not learning and developing my leadership skills, and myself personally.

Enter Orrin Woodward’s leadership team (then called TEAM).  I was introduced to TEAM in 2007 and that’s when my education really began.  I plugged into a self-directed education program that consisted of:  monthly audio trainings, a book of the month program, and a monthly seminar.  I totally immersed myself in this self-directed leadership education.  It was like breathing oxygen into my soul.  As I sit here tonight looking back over the last 7 years, I can safely say that I have listened to thousands of leadership and personal development audios, I have read hundreds of books, and I have attended nearly 100 seminars.

As a result of this last education model, my life has been richly blessed.  On April 24, 2010 I married my wife Heidi.  Before meeting the LIFE Leadership community in 2007, I had totally given up believing that I would ever get married.  I was 31!  On January 4, 2012 Andrew arrived.  After Heidi, he truly is the greatest blessing God has ever given to me.  I currently own 2 businesses and I am truly living my God-given purpose.  None of this would have ever happened had I not been introduced to a self-directed leadership education 7 years ago.

If all you have known in your life is conveyor belt thinking, I strongly encourage you to investigate the power of a leadership education.  Your life will never be the same.

Jason Fredrick
JFL Education Solutions

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