It’s never too late to teach an old dog new tricks, right?

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I mentioned Dead Poet’s Society a few weeks ago, one of my favourite films.  And in that film Robin William’s character gets his class to stand on their chairs, so they get a different perspective of the world.


Don’t get complacent.  Don’t take things for granted.


I was reminded of it this morning at 6am when my personal trainer made me do an exercise where I had to lean back on him, and vice versa, so I looked at the trees upside down and I appreciated the wonder, the novelty and difference of looking at life in a new way.


I’ve also been thinking about this as my kids start a new school year and they’re embracing the new challenges and opportunities coming their way.


Isn’t it always great to learn new things?!

Why do we not do this so much as adults?

Why did the learning of new skills have to finish when we left the classroom?


For many of us it didn’t.  I know many of the performers I work with at Incognito Artists are constantly learning new things – like playing an instrument or doing karate or circus skills or being a wedding DJ – for a role in a show, play or movie.  They’re consistently challenging themselves.


For many of us, we’re busy being responsible adults working hard and earning a living – I’m big on self improvement but how long has it been since we got out of our comfort zone, maybe even freaked ourselves out a little bit, and learned a new skill.  Something brand new yet something we’ve always wanted to learn how to do.


It’s never too late to teach an old dog new tricks, right?  (But who’s talking about an old dog?!) No matter how old we are or how rubbish we may be when we begin, isn’t it great to feel that childish excitement about learning; the wonder of understanding as someone explains how to master a skill, the thrill you feel when you start to get better and you’re so proud of yourself!


My wife, and business partner, Simone wanted to be a ballerina when she was growing up but there wasn’t a ballet school or teacher in the small NZ town where she lived.  Last year she decided she didn’t want to die without having tried it so she went to lessons to finally learn the craft that has so captivated her for years.   Now she’s learning to play tennis (so she and I can make proper use, with our kids, of our new mini tennis court in our London pad – which, I have to say, fills my heart with song, I’m so excited about it.  But that’s another story!)


This year I’m going to nail a backward flip.  Not sure how but I’m going to ask someone to teach me.  It will happen.


What about you?


I’m all ears.



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