“What I learned this year” – Simon Needham.

By Egotist / /

At the start of the year I read something that inspired me. The gist of it was, as we get older we stop challenging ourselves… whether that be with family, at the gym, at work or things we still want to do but think it’s just too late.

I felt it very poignant and began to view my own life with this thought.

I felt that maybe I have not been challenging myself as much as I should — after all, if you are not learning and growing you must be getting stale, old and dull!

So as this year winds down, I think I can safely say I have grown, learned, and am ‘less dull’ than I would have been if I didn’t take this notion to heart.

How? Well, for one example, I always wanted to take pictures but was fearful of trying to learn the complexities of the technical side of it. After reading the article I’ve mentioned, I took a couple of classes, spoke to my photography friends and bought a high-end camera. I have had so much fun learning the ropes and my fear turned to joy as my pictures have continued to improve.

Also this year, although I’m an avid fitness person and boxer, I took on the challenge of doing my first MMA cage fight. Yes, I’m a bit old for this but as you constantly hear from ‘old people,’ you are never too old. I took it to heart and for the last twelve months I have been combining my boxing training with several other martial arts, and will be fighting in March 2012.

Finally, I had the opportunity to shoot a Super Bowl commercial this year. It was a pretty scary thought, and it would have been much easier to pass and bring in another director… but in the spirit of my renewed desire to put the fear of God into myself this year, I said, “Yes, I’ll do it.” The commercial will be out in February 2012, and I have to say, it’s not too bad.

Continuing to learn and challenge myself has been a great learning experience and I will definitely continue it on as long as my legs will let me.

Here’s to unknown challenges for 2012!

Cheers! — Simon

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Simon is the co-founder of ATTIK. In 2011, Simon jumped deeper into his lifelong passion for photography. This is one of his most recent works. Model: Katie Neehan. Photo Credit: Simon Needham.