‘Teach the children so it will not be necessary to teach the adults’ – Abraham Lincoln
‘The more that you read, the more things you will know, the more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.’-Dr Seuss
Teachers. They’re everywhere. You’re a teacher, too? No matter what you do or who you are, if you’re an adult, parent or a child, you’re teaching. We’re all teachers and students, in it together, learning lessons in this great big classroom called ‘LIFE’.
As a model agent for the last 16 years, I did way more than just represent people. They didn’t come to me ‘ready to go,’ able to fly around the world and do amazing things. So teaching, or educating, has been a crucial part of my role using modeling and television work as the vehicle.
Once the models finish school, there’re usually two choices: uni; or a GAP YEAR. If the models are ready and we’ve planned for it, I’ve actively encouraged some to take a leap, gun for that gap year and model overseas.
Because I’m not alone when I say the best education you can receive goes beyond purely gaining knowledge. I heard a great saying from THE REACH APPROACH (amazing meditations! Did I tell you I believe MINDFULNESS needs to be taught in schools?):
KNOWLEDGE IS A BURDEN IF NOT PUT TO USE. As I've said before: 'What point is knowing how to drive the car if you're not driving the car?' So the best education is from experiences, trial and error, travelling and exploring. DOING.
The Uni vs. Gap Year is an interesting subject. My son, Izaac finishes school next year so we’re having conversations to the choices (trust me, you need that much time!).
In December '13, I left the company I co-founded in Red11 wondering what to do next. In theory, I’ve taken my own gap year, or sabbatical as they call it when you get to my age (46). The space and time was needed for this next big endeavour. Stay tuned!
I always used to scout and develop talent as part of my (extensive) role at Red11 so I’m continuing it because I LOVE IT! I place my scouts with agencies I work with because I love seeing people go on to become all they can be using modelling and television as a platform. I launched my webiste on the 13th October and already 7 OF MY SCOUTS HAVE PICKED UP TELEVISION COMMERCIALS AND MODELLING WORK THROUGH THEIR AGENCIES 62 & UNIQUE! Super-fast work!
I scouted this inspiring woman, CHLOE, a teacher. When I asked CHLOE what she wants out of life, I was impressed. Not only is she beautiful, intelligent and funny, she also takes care of the gifted and talented programme at her school, and is the teacher in charge of Scholarship and Art History. And she’s actively involved with theatre at her school.
Clearly making a difference is important to her, too. She wants to take the best of her educating talents and combine them with modeling, television and presenting work so she can reach her big goal by achieving her immediate smaller goals. Clever girl.
So although you didn’t take that gap year between school and uni, CHLOE, it’s never too late (look at me!). Go explore so you can make a clear decision as to what resonates, motivates and inspires you for the next leg of your journey.
If there’s something I can teach you, CHLOE, it’s that you can learn from the mistakes others make (like me). Because although I clearly endorse taking a leap of faith, I say put a firm plan in place, and save some money so when it gets like it does in your favourite inspirational saying, you don’t. Because even though Abraham Lincoln’s right when he says it starts by teaching children, the truth is we never stop learning, being educated while educating.
WHAT GOALS HAVE YOU PUT IN PLACE FOR THE NEXT YEAR? To make sure I take care of myself by doing what makes me happy. Part of that is to pursue my ‘pipedream’ of being on television and do everything I can to make it a reality. To take the ‘gap’ year I should've taken all those years ago, to live a life a little less ordinary, take risks and, most importantly, enjoy the ride in everything I do!
WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE INSPIRATIONAL SAYING? At the moment, it’s ‘You are going to want to give up. Don’t.’