“Tennis is an inner game that prompted me to compete individually and to develop a new set of skills and revisit my ingrained habits.  My challenge to you is to identify your ‘game of tennis’ and commit to a learning journey. Find your passion, manage that saboteur voice and embrace the opportunities that await your explorations.”

I love what Tennis has taught me!

Walter Wallace (MBA (FS)'13)Exactly two years ago, I picked up a tennis racket, never anticipating that the journey of learning a new skill would be so challenging and enjoyable.  I believe that new skills and habits can be successfully acquired or changed, no matter what we tell ourselves to the contrary. In the process, we gain insight into who we are as individuals.

While on the tennis court, I gleaned three key insights on the importance of embracing life-long learning.

First, love what you do!

Find something that is of great interest to you to develop, something that has personal meaning and will gain your total commitment. Angela Duckworth, in her insightful book “Grit” argues that if you care deeply about what you do, you are more likely to keep at it. And if you keep doing something you love, you are likely to love it more and more. If you don’t love it, then you are unlikely to improve. This is what separates a “job” from a “lifelong calling”.

My lovely wife, who took up tennis a year before me, introduced me to the sport.  Her enthusiasm inspired me to join her in an activity we could enjoy together. Before long, I was absorbed in a game that tested my abilities and inner self. I truly love the game; I can’t get enough of it! Which was a reminder to me that I feel the same excitement and joy for other parts of my life – my volunteer efforts with Scouts and my career at RBC. The fulfillment that I find in my life-choices influences my progress, whether as a tennis player, volunteer or professional.

Walter Wallace (MBA(FS)’13), Senior Director, Transformation Management office, Group Risk Management at RBC, leads high performing teams that focus on delivering transformational change. He facilitated the establishment of a new Global Shared Services Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia and was the founding head of a global data centre engineering and operations group and the lead in a multi-hundred-million-dollar strategic data centre build program. Walter has graciously agreed to be a repeat contributor on CFAME Connection.

Read more in “Walter Wallace: What Tennis Has Taught Me” on blogs.dal.ca.