As it turns out, being a grown-up novice offers all kinds of surprising benefits. Just ask journalist Tom Vanderbilt, who spent a year attempting to pick up a variety of challenging skills, from surfing to singing to drawing. Ultimately, he didn’t become amazing at any of these things, but his humble quest taught him something far more valuable: that despite your age or how busy you think you are, introducing yourself to a new skill is one of the most life-enhancing things you can do. Vanderbilt chronicled his efforts and hard-won wisdom in his latest book, Beginners: The Joy and Transformative Power of Lifelong Learning. For this episode, Outside’s editor, Christopher Keyes, gets Vanderbilt to explain what really happens to us when we dare to be a beginner again.
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