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Simon Caira

Personal Coach, Peak Performance Techniques

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If it's true that our gifts, passions and identity were educated out of us as we grew up, how can we reclaim and rekindle these gifts?

Sir Ken Robinson asks that we be mindful of the 'really extraordinary capacities that children have - their capacities for innovation,' and he contends, 'All kids have tremendous talents. And we squander them, pretty ruthlessly.'

He says, 'We don't grow into creativity, we grow out of it. Or rather, we get educated out if it.'

He believes - and I tend to agree - that 'many highly talented, brilliant, creative people think they're not, because the thing they were good at at school wasn't valued, or was actually stigmatized.'

Have you been steered away from your true talents in order to follow a more conventional route to success? Or was it your sense of identity that was in some way challenged and even squandered?

Sir Ken believes that a child's ability to take a chance, to not be frightened of being wrong, is lost by the time they become adults. If this is true I guess it's fair to say there are a lot of us running around with limiting core beliefs that inherently hold us back from our originality and creativity. Beliefs like: I'm frightened to make mistakes, or, I'm scared to be wrong.

Identity statements and beliefs govern our thoughts, behaviors, actions and outcomes. I wonder if you agree that you had your identity, creativity and talents educated out of you and what can be done to rekindle the fire of lost passions and to rebuild those latent talents, qualities and abilities?


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    Nov 20 2013: I will offer 2 answers to your question.
    Short answer: Move our bodies in ways, and hold postures as they were held, before being told to sit down 8 hours a day. Meaning moving as a child. Or moving as humans moved before we started sitting 8 hours a day in school.
    Long answer: I believe children sit through education and get judged by people who are not family. The child has notions of right and wrong from their parents, and also notions of right and wrong from education system.
    A long time ago what was right got a person food, and what was wrong got them killed. This lifestyle probably cultivated instincts. These instincts direct a person's behavior when reacting to stimuli. I believe this to be the essence of a person.
    These instincts were/are forsaken when children are forced to sit in a classroom.
    I believe I was steered away from my true talents when I attempted to get a business degree. All I thought about was busting through the window and enjoying the day outdoors. I approached my philosophy professor one day after class. Can't remember his exact words, but he communicated, if this is not the place for you, then don't be here.
    I dropped out and got a construction job. Found that I was content doing anything, as long as it was outdoors.
    I think group exercise, or rituals involving intricate movements, can be practiced to rekindle the fire of lost passions and rebuild the latent talents, qualities, and abilities. I believe this for 2 reasons:
    1. This is the way things were done for thousands of years.
    2. This way works for me.
    If a group of people practices a set sequence of movements, then values of community and purpose arise. If practiced enough times, an individual may discover certain movements that are easier or more difficult than others, their strengths and weaknesses.
    I think the solution is contained in an individual's journey when seeking these forsaken rituals.
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      Nov 20 2013: Hi Michael. Great to hear you made the leap to the outdoors.
      I completely relate to your ideas about group exercise and that a group of people practicing a sequence of movements can bring community and purpose. From my own experience, back in the late 70's there was a dance hall called the Hammersmith Palais. On a Monday night soul and disco was played and there were times when a couple of guys (one is still a friend of mine) would lead lines of people dancing all in unison with some simple steps. I'm talking a hundred or more people all getting down and funky. It was fantastic to be a part of and something I'll always remember. It felt geat.
      Group drumming is a powerful connector I found as well.
      My father-in-law, whose in his 80's, attends a Tai Chi gathering every morning in his local park. About 30 people gather to perform the movements each day.
      I wonder... What's the reason that this type of gathering and movement is so beneficial?
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        Nov 20 2013: Oh man, that disco sounds fun. Probably a great amount of contrast to the group Tai Chi gathering.
        Benefits I found when training Martial Arts in groups:
        Movements have a history to them. They were set long ago, and cultivated over hundreds of years. This lineage gives purpose(movements have benefited people in the past, and if no one continues to practice, then the movements will not benefit anyone in the future).
        Everyone moves as an individual, while moving as part of a community. All feeling similar sensations of weather, air, etc...
        Going to the same place and performing the same movements every morning means the eyes will look at the same places. Then more subtle changes of the environment can be observed, maybe lead to seeing relations to the world that surrounds, becoming part of nature.
        I think consistency is the value here. Consistent practice provides something to relate other aspects of life to. I don't think it has to be Martial Arts practice, that's just what I interested in. No money for disco these days.

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