It's never to late..
To LEARN something NEW
We are a family divided into two groups "boarders and skiers" on the water and up the mountain. I am the only one in my family who chooses to change what they do depending on what terrain they are on. By this I mean on the mountain I ski and on the water I board. I can't remember how this came to pass as it's been over thirty years but I've never really felt the need to make any modifications to this routine because it's been easy to just do what I know. Until... this last weekend when I was encouraging someone I love dearly to learn to waterski and it got me thinking. I'm hardly qualified to push someone else out of their comfort zone if I've never tried it myself and so I declared "I'm going to try water skiing today".
Unleash 25 experts ... At the thought of me donning the skis my family and friends decided to provide me with every piece of advice known to woman and mankind on waterskiing. "Keep your arms straight", "Bring your knees to your chest", "Let the boat pull you up", "Use your legs to push you up", you get the picture. However the only thoughts going through my mind were ones of nervous excitement, fear of failure, just plain fear and the one piece of advice that seemed to sink in "water might go up your behind and force you to go to the toilet".... awesome. Long story short, I did it, I got up. However what the experts failed to tell me, was what to do once I was up so I spent the entire time hanging on for dear life, screaming profanities and willing the boat to hurry up and get me back to shore before I fell off.
I was nervous, excited and scared beforehand, nervous, excited and terrified during but it was what I felt afterwards that made it all worthwhile. A complete sense of pride and self-worth. Isn't this what we want our kids to feel when we are continually asking them to try new things? And so this got me thinking as human beings we have a natural desire to learn and progress. Learning is actually a core need for psychological well being. And so why do we as adults decide to switch to auto pilot and carry on in our comfort zone to avoid some of the emotions that I experienced above when the end result is so much more rewarding. It always links back to fear. Fear either drives you forward or pushes you backwards.
Most of us know the multiple benefits to learning something new some of them include staving off dementia, increasing quality of life, becoming more skilled there are many. We've all read lots of inspiring stories about people who have gone back to finish or start their education and or careers as late as their 80's and even more uplifting, people who were told due to a disability or injury that they would never be able to perform an activity and now are highly successful or gold medal contenders. I've always made a conscious effort to join in new activities with my children whether it's jumping off a wharf, trying new food, a new sport or embracing a change in their lives . Although when they see me learning something I've never done before that's when the real parenting happens.
When was the last time you learnt something new? Whether it's as small as learning to ride a bike, learning another language or as big as re-training to change your career we are ALL capable of learning. We are never to old or disadvantaged. Excuses, procrastination and fear are the only reasons getting in your way. There are loads of free on-line courses or you can join us and sign up for one of the many classes at Nourish, there are also friends with skills willing to teach, educational books, the resources are endless. My challenge to you is commit to learning something new NOW, imagine what you will feel like once you have and the benefits that follow.