Are you teachable over 50 is a question I sometimes ponder. I have met so many lovely people who are missing out because they don’t believe they can learn to do things differently.
John Maxwell says that “No matter how much I know (or think I know), I can learn from this situation.”
Sydney Harris says “A winner knows how much he still has to learn, even when he is considered an expert by others. A loser wants to be considered an expert by others before he has learned enough to know how little he knows.“
I don’t know about you, but I definitely want to be a winner!
Being teachable is defined as capable of being taught, apt and willing to learn. The key word that stands out for me is willing. It’s not that women over 50 can’t learn new skills but rather, they may not be willing.
My mother was a perfect example of this concept. She often said “I’m too old to learn new tricks.” when facing a change she didn’t want. The problem with this mindset is that change happens whether we embrace it or not!
In an article in Scientific American by Rachel Wu. Carla Strickland-Hughes, experts believe the best way to maintain mental and physical ability is to stay active. Learning new skills is one way to do just that.
Why Does It Matter
Our generation has seen significant change in technology in how we do things on a daily basis.
From cellphones, online banking, shopping and even medical care, these technical advances require a certain level of computer savvy.
You simply can’t maintain independence and not embrace these changes. My mom resisted using the computer and online banking. She also refused to use a smartphone and it was to her detriment.
There was no Facetime with me or her grandchildren. And, she eventually became completely dependent on my brother to manager her affairs as a lack of mobility set in.
In a nutshell, my mom wasn’t teachable. She didn’t believe she could learn new things and chose not to try. She was so set in her routine that change wasn’t possible.
The question I often ask myself is “am I teachable?” The answer is YES! I don’t necessarily like change, but I do love to learn.
Since starting this blog, I have learned all kinds of things about computers and software. My tech skills have improved through both classes and books. In addition, I have become very skilled at searching “Google” for “how to’s” on every subject imaginable! LOLOL
My husband has declared me the official tech installer in our house. Not sure that bar is set really high, but I know how to “YouTube” anything I need to learn!
Are You Teachable
First let’s just accept that technology is not going to stop advancing. More and more of our daily tasks and activities will be done or managed online. We must not buy into the myth that learning is too hard after a certain age.
The truth is that with a positive and encouraging environment along with a good attitude, older adults can efficiently learn new skills just like someone younger.
Better still, by learning new things and getting out of your comfort zone, you will not fear challenges in the future.
Keep your mind sharp. Read books, take classes in person or online and keep learning new things.
Don’t let stubbornness of process keep you from learning new ways of doing things. You just might find easier and better methods that free you to accomplish more than you ever thought you could do.
So, if the question arises, “Are you teachable?”, you can confidently answer, “Yes I am!”
Stay sharp and keep learning!