“Opportunities multiply as they are seized.” (Sun Tzu)
Do you think you are too old to learn new tricks? That’s the question I asked my guest Casey Eberhart on a recent Little White Lie. Inspired? Interest piqued? Then you’ll love this interview with one of my dearest friends, internationally recognized speaker, trainer, business strategist Casey Eberhart! Catch the interview in its entirety here.
Our question for this episode of the Little White Lie Show is: Do you think you are too old to learn new tricks?
Actually I asked him, can you teach an old dog new tricks? Now, I know none of us – including me – wants to call ourselves ‘old dogs’ but stay with me here…
This is Casey’s definition of ‘old dog: “anybody going through life who is ready to make a change, a transition in different age categories, like a kid to a teenager, a teenager to a pre-adult, a pre-adult to an adult, an adult moving on in different chapters of their life.”
His question becomes: “As we go through our journey here on the planet, can we and are we set up for changing directions and reinventing ourselves – coming out of the closet with our little white lies? Absolutely! We can absolutely be taught new tricks!”
Casey believes (and lives and breathes, having run over a dozen successful companies) that the first thing to make this happen is, “we have to be open to learning – in the business world, we call that being coachable: ‘Are you open to change? And, can you reinvent yourself?’”
How can you become coachable, so you can “learn new tricks” ‘til you’re 100 years old and beyond?
“Nothing changes until the pain of changing is less than the pain of staying the same,” responds Casey – profound! A life-altering event like losing a loved one, being diagnosed with a serious illness, laid-off a job, getting disowned by our parents – a host of life-altering events can ‘force’ us to become trainable or teachable or to do something different. We also can get to a maturity level where we just get fed up with being fed up, so we make a change for ourselves.
To illustrate, Casey shares a story about his mother.
“My mom was a very active member of the community. A high school principal, she was also a bigwig in state education she is dialed-in to local politics. She is also an amazing woman who spent her career being in front of the public eye, dealing with thousands of people at any given time. I remember the Monday after she retired, my mom looked at me and said, ‘Well, now what? I don’t know what to do.’ And a few years later, here is my mom playing poker, golfing, hanging out at the gym, going on theater trips in Europe – the craziest stuff that, as a kid, I never thought she would’ve done.”
This is a Little White Lie Movement gem right here. Casey’s mom has learned how to be in her new skin. So many people still believe that when you retire, it’s the end of your world. We’re here to tell you that regardless of age, whatever skin you’re in – whether you want to retire at 40 because you can, or whether you to work ’til 90 because you can – it doesn’t matter!
“It all comes down to choice,” says Casey, especially in terms of how we look at ‘retirement.’
For him, the definition is very specific: “Retirement simply means that I have more residual income coming in than my bills.” Once we achieve this as a goal, it doesn’t mean we’re going to stop doing what we’re doing – it just means we’re going to have a choice to do something new or different, in fact many choices! The “old dog, new tricks” conversation then becomes about all the things that are open to all of us to do and learn, the money we can earn from them, or how we can pay to do them.
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Here is where our inspiring quote comes in, “Opportunities multiply as they are seized”. Casey has some awesome tips for us:
1. Learn from other people who have been on that journey you’re looking to go on.
He talks about going to a networking event and seeing the 100-year-old lady talking about compensation plans. Or flipping real estate or collecting art or turning over a stamp collection or whatever. Talk to people about their stories. Because you never know what opportunity’s going to crack open if you have those conversations.
2. Learn or get better at asking great questions – and being present with the answers.
Stay open to the opportunities to be found. Because the minute you close down, put your blinders on and only go after one little thing, that’s where it turns to stubborn, “I’m right!” and you miss out on the choices and opportunities that could be right for you.
3. Then seize those opportunities.
Casey: “The blue sea of abundance is out there, for us to get on a boat and fly through! So often, we get pulled back into the red sea of scarcity. So, as you move through your life journey, be expansive. Think big, dream like you did when you were five. Those expansion dreams and thoughts are what will keep you moving in a forward direction.”
As a tiny kid, Casey loved sharks. His grandfather taught him a valuable lesson about the shark: It always has to be moving forward. It cannot stop or move backward, because if it does it will sink to the bottom and drown. Casey has always liked to be like a little shark. Slowly gliding through the water, always on the prowl, always looking out in front of him and always surveying the scene for every opportunity.
Opportunities multiply as they are seized, as the shark goes forward.
So, I say: Be a shark like Casey – You’ll never be too old for new tricks!
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As always, let’s keep this fascinating and empowering conversation going! Finally, share your answers, questions, thoughts on Facebook and don’t forget to use the hashtag #LittleWhiteLie.
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