On a recent school visit I noticed a poster in the boarding house outlining ‘The Life Rules From Bill Gates’. Although a little tongue in cheek, I feel there is some useful advice for 21st Century teenagers.

Life is not fair. Get used to it.

The world won’t care about your self-esteem.

The world will expect you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself.

You will NOT earn £50,000 a year straight after leaving school. You won’t be an MD with a car and a house until you earn both.

If you think your teachers are tough, wait until you get a boss.

Sweeping the floor in a fast food restaurant is not beneath your dignity. Your grandparents had a different word for it-they called it opportunity.
If you mess up, it’s not your parents’ fault, so don’t whine about your mistakes, learn from them.

Before you were born, your parents weren’t as boring as they are now. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes and listening to you talking about how cool you are. So before you save the rain forest from the parasites of your parents’ generation, try cleaning out the rubbish in your own room.

Your school may have done away with winners and losers, but life has not. In some schools they have abolished failing grades and they’ll give you as many times as you want to get the right answer. This doesn’t bear the slightest resemblance to real life.

Life is not divided into terms. You don’t get summers off and very few employers are interested in helping you find yourself. Do that in your own time.

Television is NOT real life. In real life people actually leave the coffee shop and go to work.

BE NICE TO NERDS. The chances are you’ll end up working for one.

Thanks to Mr Taylor at Oakham School for sharing this with me. Oakham is a co-educational boarding and day school for children aged 11-18 in the beautiful county of Rutland.