When a Student is Ready the Teacher will Appear

I’ve held myself back from learning opportunities by making decisions to live a certain way or to remain insulated to new learning opportunities. Thanks to the internet, fantastic learning tools are now available to us. When a student is ready to learn the teacher or tool, will appear. The only question is, who will you decide to be? — Bryan Miller

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When a Student is Ready the Teacher will Appear
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Video Transcript:

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Hello, my friends. My fellow life workers. It’s Bryan here. I’m coming to you from Quito, Ecuador. The capital of this country. Elevation here is about 9,500 feet. Where I live in Salt Lake, it’s about 4,500 feet. I’ll tell you; I’m feeling the altitude here. I’m glad I came a day early to get acclimated.

By the time you watch this, I will be in the rain forest. I’ll probably have just come out of the rain forest. I’m not sure that I’ll have internet access anytime between now and then so I’m going to film this today and make sure you have it.

There is a beautiful view here. In this capital city. I’m on the third floor of the Cultura Manor. I’ve worked on my Spanish. I know that accent wasn’t very good. In fact, that’s something that I want to share with you today; an experience I had last night when I arrived.

I studied Spanish a little bit when I was in high school. I didn’t go very far with it. I never had a chance to use it or didn’t take many chances to use it.

Last night when I arrived, we were waiting for a few other people to get here and we were talking to our driver at the airport who was going to bring us into the city. I thought I’m going to learn some Spanish. I’m going to use the Spanish that I know. I’m going to learn a little bit more while I’m here.

It was remarkable how the things I learned years ago started to come back. I realized on my two previous trips to Ecuador, the first time I came here was in, and I came back in, that on my first two trips it was like I was totally in this bubble of not even trying to understand when Spanish was being spoken. Not even trying to use it aside from gracias or si. Por favor or something really really basic like that.

As our driver was working with me to help me conjugate words and understand some of the basic structure and learn a few vocabulary words, I really got present to just how insulated I had kept myself on my previous trips.

I wonder where else I was doing that in my life. I wonder, I invite you to consider if there’s anywhere in your life that you’re doing that. That you decided for yourself to be a certain way.

For example, “Like I don’t speak Spanish,” or “I don’t eat that food,” or “I don’t like that person,” or “I don’t watch the genre of movie.” or whatever it is. And then you just live from that position basically and in so doing diminish the richness or the interest or the growth or the fun or the challenge or anything that’s available to you because you’ve locked yourself in that way.

One of the things that I did, I then got online, and I looked at what apps are available that would help me to become a little bit more fluent in Spanish. I found Duolingo. You might know the app. I’d never seen it before, I’d heard of it. I was first of all surprised to learn it’s the most downloaded education app in history.

As I’ve started to use Duoling, it’s really fun. It’s cool. Finding it is one of those things I think is true: “when a student is ready the teacher will appear.” It’s incredible that people built all these amazing tools and made them available free. What a wonderful day and age we live in.

The only question is, who do you decide to be? What do you decide to do with it? I wish you were here with me. It’s fun, amazing, beautiful, delicious, place. A lot of good food here. The fruit is amazing. I discovered guanabana a few couple years ago. This fruit changed my life. If you haven’t had guanabana, it’s a gift.

With that, I will look forward to talking with you again when I emerge from the rain forest. I hope you’re well. Hope you’re having fun. I will talk to you again very soon. Until then, take care. Thanks for watching. — Bryan Miller