teacher

The trick is knowing when

The trick is knowing when

June 10, 2020
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I am a good trainer/teacher, with a knack for making my passion for things shine through, even for people who really aren’t that interested in the topic to start off with. And yet, you bet there is more for me to learn in this arena.

There is a time and a place for everything though.
The trick is knowing when.

And my moment to learn more about becoming an even better trainer/teacher is not now.

What it is time for right now, is to watch an episode of Vikings (new season released on Netflix, yeah, my weekend is set!), patting myself over the shoulder for a training well done today (2 hours of Basic GMP for Builders).


#tankespjärn, for those who wish to discover. More. Other. New.
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The Talent Code (book 1 of 12)

January 27, 2019
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in Tip
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The Talent Code. Written by Daniel Coyle. Subtitled Greatness isn’t born, it’s grown. The basis of this entire book is this: Skill is a cellular insulation that wraps neural circuits and that grows in response to certain signals. This is, in other words, a book about one thing: myelin. The fatty layer that wraps around neurons insulating the neural thread, so the signal can travel more rapidly along it.

It’s also a book about three things, which is how the central nervous system generates more myelin:
Deep practice
Ignition
Master coaching

Deep practice“It’s all about finding the sweet spot. There’s an optimal gap between what you know and what you’re trying to do. When you find that sweet spot, learning takes off.”

Ignition is about finding that thing you love. Stoking the fire, wanting to put more fuel on it, daily. And that requires character: “Usually, we think of character as deep and unchanging, an innate quality that flows outward, showing itself through behavior. KIPP shows that character might be more like a skill – ignited by certain signals, and honed through deep practice.” 

Might be more like a skill? No. No doubt in my mind. Character is as flexible and formative as any other skill. Learning to read and write, to dance and sing, to ride the bike and drive a car. Skills that we can acquire. Learning to be kind and generous, helpful and loving, funny and intense. Or for that matter unkind and harsh, mean and petty, jealous and hateful. All skills we can learn, even though these latter are usually talked about as character traits rather than skills. But we can learn them. It’s not a matter of being born with or without. Practice makes perfect (given that the practice is deep of course!).

Master coaching is being this kind of teacher: to get [the student] inside the deep-practice zone, to maximize the firings that grow the right myelin for the task, and ultimately to move closer toward the day that every coach desires, when the students become their own teachers. 

In the words of Robert Lansdorp, professional tennis coach: “If it’s a choice between me telling them to do it, or them figuring it out, I’ll take the second option every time. You’ve got to make the kid an independent thinker, a problem-solver. I don’t need to see them every day, for chrissake. You can’t keep breast-feeding them all the time. The point is, they’ve got to figure things out for themselves.”

Another way to put it is in the words of Thomas Carruthers: “A teacher is one who makes himself progressively unnecessary.” 

I’ve experienced this several times in my professional life, and it is the most rewarding experience I can think of. When I am no longer needed, my work is done, and I can move on. It’s simply the best ever!

The Talent Code is a fast and easy read, shining the light on learning in the most helpful way. 10 minutes of guitar playing a day, is on my list of intentions for 2019. And yup, I will be tweaking it towards more of a deep practice, that’s for sure!


The book I am blogging about is part of the book-reading challenge I’ve set for myself during 2019, to read and blog about 12 Swedish and 12 English books, one every other week, books that I already own.

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Selecting a teacher

April 7, 2016
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Selecting a Teacher 
There are so many teachers in the world and so many theories about life. 
When selecting a teacher, ask yourself… 
Is my teacher a well-balanced person? Is she or he happy? 
Does my teacher reflect and demonstrate the quality of life I desire? 
If the answer to any of these questions is no, move on in your journey.
Otherwise you may become one of the blind, led by the blind.
Sydney Banks, from The Missing Link

You can exchange the word teacher with other words, such as guide, coach, leader, boss, spiritual guide, enabler. The word doesn’t really matter anyway, but oh, how these words ring true for me.

I remember Lama Kathy Wesley stating in one of my favorite podcasts how important she felt it to be to look at the elders of any tradition of faith that you found interesting. By their appearance, health, harmony, you know, whether or not to venture forth into that tradition or not. In a nutshell, she’s stating exactly the same thing as Syd Banks is pointing to.

And at the same time, well-balanced doesn’t mean a person who is “perfect”, and never gets out of whack. On the contrary, I would say. I do not require my teacher, coach, guide (yeah, you get it! That whatever-word you place here!) to be “a perfect human being”, in the meaning that they do not live the human experience.

Because that’s part of the trick for me – living life, experiencing all the up’s and down’s of human experience, and doing it with grace, with balance (that is, returning to balance when off-centered for a moment or two), and a lot of love, laughter and light. Tears commingle with laughter, grief with ecstatic joy, boredom with the feeling of flow where time seemingly disappears. All of that is part of the human experience, but how I live into it, or perhaps, how I live out of it, is what tells a well-balanced person apart for me.

BoldomaticPost_Selecting-a-Teacher-There-areWriting this, I just had an insight.

This quote isn’t only about looking for external teachers. It’s also a great reminder to myself, on my ability to be my own guide and enabler.

When I am well-balanced, happy, reflecting and demonstrating the qualities of life that I desire – then I am a good teacher for myself.

And when I am the opposite (off-centered, miserable, definitely not demonstrating the qualities of life I desire, but rather the opposite), it serves me well to remember to take myself a lot less seriously, as it’s as if I am one of the blind, leading myself. And boy does it hurt when I stumble into all sorts of obstacles along the way, attempting to lead my blind self. In situations like that, the best thing I can do is to pause, to stop in my tracks, and wait for vision to return. Go about my day, doing the routine things that I can do blind-folded, staying clear of making radical decisions, and not expecting too much of myself either. It’s not always easy though.

So am I the only one dumb enough to try to lead myself even when I am in no shape to lead?

Since 2012 I have blogged over at herothecoach.com and this post is a sample of what I’ve been writing over the years. I hope you enjoy this #ThrowbackThursday on the same theme as the 12th post on Doing gentle. This post was originally published here, and if you do, please subscribe to updates so you won’t miss out on future posts.

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