“When you learn to speak no one corrects you when you are wrong. In fact if you say a word wrong for long enough your parents will start saying it your way!”
Are you smiling? Can you think of a word that your child said wrongly and you still say it their way? I immedietly thought of a lady I met the other day whose internet business is called Underbrella because her 5 year old son never said umbrella!
The above quote came from a Ted talk given by a famous bass player called Victor Wooten. No I hadn’t heard of him either until last week despite the fact that he is a 5 time grammy award winner. My partner who is a bass player was looking Victor up on You Tube and came across this amazing talk. Not only is Victor a great musician and teacher, he is a father of 4, and a man of immense wisdom.
Victor shares with us 3 lessons about living a happier life that music has taught him.
- Be a good listener – Victor points out that to be a good musician you have to be a good listener. I firmly believe that one of the greatest skills you can teach your children is to be a good listener. How many times do relationships break down through bad communication? Whether it is with a partner, a child, a friend or a work colleague a problem often begins when one person is not listening to the other. We all want to be heard but we very rarely take time to listen!
- Work together – Beautiful Music is created when musicians come together. Yes an individual can have an idea, can even write a song by themselves. But the power of the song is created when a number of musicians come together to play. Magic is truly created when musicians play together. Similarly in life we are so much more powerful and creative when we work together. Today our education system encourages children to compete with each other. How much better would it be if we taught our children to embrace their gifts and then share them with others?
- Use your greatness to help others. – I love this. Victor says if others put you on a pedestal don’t be humble and jump off. Instead stay on your pedestal and pull other people up. They will grow much faster than if you come down to where they are!! I feel that this is a fundamental lesson for life. What magic would be created if we teach our children to be the best that they can be and encourage them to help others to do the same.
These may seem like simple lessons but take a moment, imagine the sort of world we would live in if every child embraced all 3. Can you feel it? Is your heart singing too? If it is then I would like to encourage you to join me and take one week to focus on each lesson. What happens when you choose to listen actively? What changes when you embrace the people you are working with? And what magic happens when you focus on helping someone else to succeed?
Here is the link to Victor’s Ted Talk https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2zvjW9arAZ0
I look forward to hearing about your experiences.