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3 Lessons We Can Learn from Ted Lasso!

Unless you've been living under a rock the last few years, you probably will have heard about Ted Lasso.

This wildly popular Apple TV series has become more than just a TV show for many. It's wildly countercultural message of kindness and optimism has won the hearts and eyes of millions of people around the world.

So, what can we learn? We've watched the series several times through and here's what us as PE Teachers, coaches or leaders can learn from this out-of-place American in the brutally English world of football (Soccer).

Lesson 1: Believe!

If you could sumarise the show in 1 word, it would be 'Believe.'

Ted brings an outlandish optimism to a set-in-their-ways down and out football club: AFC Richmond. His whole philosophy was based on the concept that if you believe, you are 50% of the way there! This was met with a brick wall of opposition but over time his players bought into the concept and embraced the underdog mindset, with life-changing results! The team united and built something truly special.

So, how can we instill this message into our students or players? How do we react when we lose? Or when we win? Or when there is no chance of winning?

If sport has taught us anything then we should know that ANYTHING can happen, just believe!

Lesson 2: Be Curious, Not Judgmental!

In one of the most powerful scenes in the entire series, Ted and Rupert (a terribly manipulative, all-round shocking bloke and former own of AFC Richmond) are playing a game of darts in a pub.

Rupert is mocking Ted about pretty much everything, including his dart-playing ability. Ted then proceeds to switch from his weaker hand to his dominant hand and nail several bullseye shots while delivering a tear-jerking monologue about how he played every Sunday with his father as a kid until he passed away. But Rupert would have never known that because he didn't ask.

The takeaway message is absolute gold: "Be curious, not judgmental." Seek to understand before judging. Could this idea solve bullying? Maybe. Maybe not. Nevertheless, it is a game-changing concept that we SHOULD be modelling and teaching our kids.

Lesson 3: Be a Goldfish

One of the key players in Ted's team is struggling with doubt, confidence and reacting to other player's banter.

Now, common advice might be 'block it out', 'forget about it' or 'toughen up' but Ted has something much better for us... 'Be a Goldfish.'

This nugget of wisdom is all about the idea that Goldfish apparently have the shortest memory out of any animal. They forget quickly! And so should we.

It's not useful for us to dwell on mistakes, struggles or doubts but we need to acknowledge them and then move on. This is resilience in action! Let's not hold onto grudges or anger, they eat us from the inside out!

If you've got a hot head student in your class or team or 'confidence player,' this might be a life-changing tip to share! Good one, Ted.

Believe. Be curious. Be a Goldfish.

Imagine a world where all our kids, students and players grasped onto these concepts and lived them out. We'd have young people who are wildly optimistic, empathetic and resilient! Sounds pretty good to us.


  • If you haven't seen Ted Lasso, watch it. You won't regret it. Apart from some salty language, it is a powerful and hilarious show that will leave you with tears and a smile

  • If you have seen it, watch it again! You'll pick up more nuggets of gold.

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