I started diving a long time after being a skin diver for ages. Back to my childhood, which I lived in Spain, we used "snorkel down" to about 10 - 15 meters, lay on the bottom of the sea near a little wreck we had there.
My first "scuba" dive was in 1998 on Corsica, for my OWD, and I was absolutely fascinated by it. It was a BLAST, a DJ would say! I decided right away that I would continue my diving education each time I had some days off, or on vacation, in order to know more and do more.
The next step was my AOWD, which I did on Gozo, and once I again I already decided to do my Rescue Diver course as soon as possible!
My business life in Holland went on, to great heights, until I realized I had no private life. I quit it all in order to become a PADI Instructor in Mexico. I thought it would be a 6 months thing, that's what we all thought. I agreed with my recruiter that I would give her a call the moment I was back in Holland.
Almost 5 years later I was still in Mexico! I loved this life, I loved teaching and I love my divers! I did it all: Divemaster on the island of Cozumel, Instructor on the main land (Playa del Carmen), Baseleader of a PADI 5 Star IDC Center in Barceló, Cenotes cavern guide, and so on.
There´s two main things you need to remember as an Instructor: They are taking this course with you because they have never done this before, and "we are not fish". Now with my first hint, as long as you remember that they have not done this specific skill EVER before, you will have more patience.
With "we are not fish", it helps me to stay fully alert while diving with people! Do expect the weirdest things. Do expect mistakes. Do expect Panic. Do expect stress. Do expect everything. Be paranoia. Now this sounds scary, but I swear, there come a moment, when you know BEFORE they do it, which mistake they are going to make. And you will prevent it.
And they will have a great dive.
So what about teaching diving? Well there´s a big difference with the customers you are dealing with: They want this! It´s not the same when you have to sell something to somebody who doesn´t need it. So their whole attitude will be different! Of course you need to take care that they do the things In the right order, and you need to show them different ways to reach the goal, but they want to do this!
One more trick: Do not only teach Discover Scuba, every day, twice a day, for the rest of your life. You will burn out in the third year. Teach different things! Do Nitrox, teach Advanced, train yourself further, become a IDC Staff Instructor so you can teach the Assistant Instructor course, go deep, shallow, digital, cavern, scooter, boat, drift, dry, sidemount, but do not teach only one thing.
Oh. I was supposed to write something about myself here. Oops. So I am Robert, Dutch, born 09.08.1967, lived everywhere (Holland, France, Spain, Mexico, Egypt, Germany and so on), trained divers in the same everywhere, in the cold, warm, dark, bright, salt, fresh and so on, and I still love every course! I speak 5 languages fluently (it helps if you live abroad, don´t think so too?), and I trained so far from 8 year old up to 78 years young.
Yes I am a PADI Course Director, and yes I do teach as well the "sports" diving courses, to keep track of the courses which you will teach. I need to know about the problems you might encounter, and I need to tell you how to prevent them, so yes, I think teaching from BM up to MSD is a good thing for Course Directors!
"Just do it" Nike would say. Become a PADI Instructor and have a ride of a lifetime!
Yes I do have tons of dives, and yes I spent money on equipment. It´s my office, isn't it?
Have a break, have a dive.