Learning to snowboard is like executing an idea

You meet the most random but coolest people at The Hub Melbourne and recently, I met Michael Leahy, a social entrepreneur in his free time and a full-time ski lodge manager and your typical young person in his other time. He’s working on 3BL a profit-for-purpose social enterprise that imports plastic bottles from developing nations and turn them into recycled furniture.

We had a chat and after a few chats, he invited up to Mt Buller where he runs a Ski Lodge. I’ve never seen snow before, let alone ski or snowboard but we picked up some gears and off I went to learn snowboarding from the pro. After a day of tumbles, I finally got the hang of it on my second day and on the third day, I can snow from the top to the bottom without getting down on my knees or bum.

So, what have I learned about learning to snowboard that’s similar to executing your ideas?

- you can learn all the theories but at the end of the day, its jumping on the board and out into the slopes that makes all the difference – implementing is more valuable than knowing all the theories to get it perfect.
- constant reiteration – you’ll fall a hundred bazillion times but its all about constantly picking up mistakes and change them.
- trust you instinct and feel it – I sound all wishy washy and I probably don’t make sense but I’m one that has to feel it to get the hang of it and its pretty similar in this case. You jump on the snow and you’ll slowly pick up things that no one can tell you like the co-ordination of your bum, knees, toes and back, steering and all these tiny adjustments. Trust your gut instinct and go with it even when you think something doesn’t seem right.
- in the beginning its okay to ignore others – I was constantly worried that I might run into someone and kill someone but Sam’s advice was to worry about yourself first and not get paranoid about those around you.
- practise by yourself if that helps – and somewhere along the way, another lone nut will come and ask you for advice and you can practise together.
- getting a mentor or teacher is very important – esp one that’s supportive and gives you very honest feedback.

And at the end of the day, have fun.