Don't worry, there will be a point in your Jiu-Jitsu experience, in which you start to feel everything "click" and will start to truly understand what is happening. Finally the impossible seems possible and your body has caught up to your mind. Your technique and movement are flowing with precision and accuracy. Your confidence and self-esteem is soaring, as you begin to conquer feats on the mat you never imagined you could.
So with all of that...
What actually happened?
When did it happen?
Can we understand how to achieve this level of Jiu-jitsu enlightenment faster?
When you enter a Jiu-Jitsu Academy, you are entering a world in which almost EVERYTHING is counter intuitive. It is truly like you have walked into another world, where the inhabitants are speaking a language you don't understand. Slowly as you immerse yourself into the landscape and culture of Jiu-Jitsu, you begin to understand what is goin on around you and you start to blend in.
The beginning stage of Jiu-Jitsu for everyone is exciting, life changing, and also frustrating. Everyone at some point, regardless of their love of Jiu-Jitsu, has had their heart broken by Jiu-Jitsu in someway. It's impossible to avoid this. If you care about your own personal progress and learning effectively and efficiently, you will get frustrated when you expectations are not met.
Jiu-Jitsu is very difficult in the elementary stages of your training. You are learning new patterns of movement that are not natural. Your brain is getting rewired in order to soak in all of this new knowledge you are incurring. At the same point, you are trying to win a a physical chess game against an opponent who knows your tactics, strategies, and personal strengths and weaknesses.
You will struggle and here is why...
In order to win the match, the fight, the battle, you have to consciously pay attention to the movements your opponent is making. You have to consciously pay attention to your own movement and techniques, all while monitoring your level of exhaustion, surroundings, and psychological panic signals. This is A LOT of conscious effort. When you think about it, it is a MIRACLE that one can even make it beyond this and actually achieve success. But people do and people will continue to.
With that all being said, it will get easier. Experience and training will start to take YOUR MOVES and make them into muscle memory. The need for conscious thought over your own movement will be greatly reduced and you will be able to focus on your opponent. Give it time, keep up the repetitions and trust the process.
Pay MORE Attention
The TRIAD of Attention is:
Usually when a student comes to me, frustrated and confused, it is because of one of these two things. It is because they are unsure what to do and where to go. It's rarely because of a need to attain more skill. When someone is seeking an answer to a problem, they don't know the right questions to ask. If you don't know the right questions, how can you expect to find the correct answers. If you think the problem is something that it is not, how do you know if there is actually a problem or merely a need for a change in perspective on what's happening.
The answer usually lies within that triad. There is a time when you are so focused on what you are doing, you are blind to what your opponent is doing to you. There is a time when you are using so much strength, with little technique, or are so fatigued, that you can't comprehend what you should be doing or even come close to what your opponent is doing.
To find a balance; to find harmony; to find a synchronization of this triad; is to truly discover mastery and discover the beauty of Jiu-Jitsu. A state of practice in which everything is working together with fluidity and on time. But if we really want this...we need to start working on each of those factors separately. This will take a lot of effort and a lot of patience.
Beat your Self, don't beat yourself up
Don't get down on yourself. Frustration and fascination are closely related and are two paths on the trail to success. One will lead you into a disastrous world, in which you are focused on your inadequacies, angry and resentful at the success of others, and likely to call it quits on something you actually enjoy. Imagine giving up on something you love, something you care for. People do that all the time with Jiu-Jitsu. I have NEVER met someone who was happy they stopped Jiu-Jitsu. I have met THOUSAND'S who regretted quitting.
Don't get frustrated by your lack of victories in class. Don't get frustrated by the improvement of the person next to you. Don't assume that your progress is because the world is against you.
DO focus on improving what you can change. Train with a purposeful mindset.
This will be a continual series of writings designed to help articulate what is difficult to understand in the gentle art.
When you have made full use of every resource available to you...
When you have searched within you to find the TRUTH behind your goals, desires, virtues, and shortcomings...
When you have reached a peaceful level of existence in which time goes by at just the right speed and life seems to be working in perfect harmony...
YOU MAY HAVE REACHED YOUR POTENTIAL!
There Is More
Imagine yourself a few years from now.
Think of what you want.
Picture the ideal version of you and place you would like to be .
For some, this vision of the future is foggy and filled with uncertainty. This is unfortunate. It can be hard for some people to define their goals and even more difficult for them to build a strategy to obtain them.
This is mostly due to the fact that most adults are not engaged in an activity that stimulates growth or progression. Without continual growth and progress, the future can seem hopeless and miserable. It may be hard to see yourself in the future, because you can’t picture yourself doing anything different than you are right now.
If this continues, it will not be good for you and it will not be good from those around you. Regardless of your place in the world and the lack of “gifts” you were born with; you are an individual. An individual that has the capability to transform and become something of value to yourself and to others around you.
Sometimes you SHOULD NOT accept yourself. It doesn’t mean you shouldn’t accept the hand you were dealt and things you cannot change. What it means is that you should ALWAYS work to strive to the highest good and ask the best of yourself. Otherwise, you will remain trapped in a cycle of monotony and boredom. THERE IS MORE TO YOU...
What Is Your Potential?
If you were to take advantage of every possible resource available to you...
If you were to work tirelessly, with discipline, sacrifices, proper choices, and virtuously...
That is what your POTENTIAL is.
None of us are doing this. We can always do more. We can always do better. To be honest, there is no measurement or proper framework to understand our “POTENTIAL.” What we have is an idea of an ideal version of us. Or perhaps we have an idea of someone we aspire to model ourselves toward. Both of those can be good ideas.
Some people do not like the idea of modeling themselves after someone else. It’s understandable. But wouldn’t it be arrogant to think we could do better than someone who is already at a stage of their life, success, and development that we haven’t reached? Wouldn’t it be easier to follow the processes they followed to reach the ideal state we are working towards. Even if you did exactly what THEY did, it still wouldn’t be the same. You are you and you are different in many ways. Some good, some bad. So it may be in all of our best interests to analayze our possible potential and find a template to work from.
Jiu-Jitsu Is Your Key
I may be a little biased towards Jiu-Jitsu, but in this case, my bias is acceptable...why? Because it’s the truth. Not my opinion of the truth. The actual truth. Truth like LAW.
Simply put...Jiu-Jitsu is an activity that stimulates continual and infinite growth. The training that takes place on the mat, forces and ignites development in every trait and developmental category you can think of.
In order to be successful on the mat, you have to learn patience, composure, focus, timing, develop physically, learn to breathe...the list goes on and on.
All of these areas and more get developed through the disciplined practice, the strategic analysis, the discoveries of unimaginable physical potential - you didn’t know you had.
The training is like a catalyst for your growth. It is a vehicle to your realized self-potential. It helps you become aware of your insufficiencies, vulnerabilities, and weaknesses. While this is brought to light, you are developing strength, handling pressure better, and surrounding yourself with individuals who are working collectively as you are to reach their own potential.
This is why Jiu-Jitsu ignites the spark dormant within you. It takes you from a space of uncertainty to a world of certainty. You start to see yourself in ways you couldn’t when the fog clouded your vision of the future. Jiu-Jitsu helps you uncover and unlock the potential within. The potential that allows you to transform into your ideal and gives you the tools to live with your vulnerabilities. Don’t stop moving forward. You are not even close to reaching the maximum height of your potential. When you think you have, you may realize there is more. We don’t know our potential, but we do know that if we strive for BETTER, we are on the right path.