Tuesday, December 6, 2011

What's the perfect game plan to beat you? (turning weakness into strength)

An extremely important part to achieving any goal is self examination.  You know yourself better than anyone on this earth, if you can learn to look at yourself objectively and identify your weaknesses you can become virtually unstoppable.  Pride is often a byproduct of being blinded by your own success and if you only focus winning you may forget what helped you win in the first place, or worse yet, forget what has made you lose.  It seems to me that one of the best ways to improve at anything is to constantly observe areas that need improvement.

In Jiu-Jitsu I believe it is of incredible benefit to keep a journal of how your training sessions go.  Lets say everyday you keep a journal and it becomes obvious after a week or two that you are constantly getting hit with armbars.  Chances are there is something you are doing, or not doing that is causing you to get armbared repeatedly.  You may never have realized this problem unless you took the time to journal, now that you know your weakness you can begin to solve them.  In order to succeed or improve at ANYTHING in life, it is of paramount importance to realize that there is no such thing as failure unless you give up.  Every time you get tapped in class be happy because now you can learn to defend that submission, every time someone passes your guard rejoice, because now you can learn to defend that pass.  It is important to keep a log of all of your problems and immediately address them.  Ask an upper belt how to counter your issue, watch videos of black belts competing, do drills with the position until you get it, this is how you really improve.  People don't become champions by rolling to beat everyone in class all the time, they don't succeed by only doing what they are good at, you might be tall man on the totem pole in the gym, but how do you do in tournaments?

If you want to be the best at anything, you must understand your weaknesses and overcome them.  If you want a promotion at work, you need to know what your strengths are, but it is most important to know your weaknesses.  People will see your strengths clearly and if they must compete with you they will avoid your strength and attack your weaknesses.  Your bosses know your strengths, they hired you for them, but what will really impress a boss is improvement!  Maybe you know tardiness has always been your problem, you have justified it to yourself making excuses for it:  I always stay late, I always pick up when they need it, I am always on call on the weekend, but trust me your boss will remember you are always tardy.  If a promotion is what you are after you better start showing up on time, then it will show your employer that you are improving, and you are turning your weakness into a strength.  This is one of the secrets of everyone who has truly been successful in life, being humble enough to observe yourself and find your shortcomings and turning them into strengths.

A great way to find where your game needs improvement is to pretend that you have an evil twin.  They think just like you, they roll just like you, move just like you, and they know your game inside and out.  What would this twin do to beat you?  Would they pull guard first?   Would they go for the take down?  Would they play de la riva?  Would they counter your spider guard?  If you ask questions like these and answer them honestly you will begin to find your weaknesses, make note of your problems in every class, because this is one of the best ways to improve.

Getting back up is the number one indicator of any one's determination.  Many people stay down when they fail, and so they are defeated.  If you truly want to succeed you must turn failure into success, one way or another you must realize that every failure is a chance to improve, and a chance to succeed.  A winner never quits, and a quitter never wins.  Maybe you don't want to be a world champion, but you should know what your goals are and they should be definitive, if you don't know where you are going you will NEVER get there.  Keep going, keep learning, stay positive, and keep rolling!


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