The Art of Winning Blog

Monday, November 5, 2012

Fears and Frustrations by Jane Bright

Fears and Frustrations by Jane Bright

Everyone on the path runs into times of confusion. I had a period where every time I came to class I felt frustrated and like I wasn’t getting better. I felt stuck and I was afraid I was doing everything wrong. Within a single kata we can feel things go off track. We can go back and check ourselves and see where we went wrong. Did I take their balance? Did I keep my own balance? Did I keep my kamae: knees bent, back straight, hands up, eyes on target? Did I try to just use my muscles? Did I try to hard to make things happen? If we can answer these questions we can go back and see where we went wrong. If we don’t ask we have given up the chance to change it in the future. If we are left without an answer we find ourselves discouraged and frustrated. We may even be scared to try again because we don’t want to keep being wrong.
We can also ask these questions of ourselves in situations outside the dojo. We can keep track of our life kamae. Did I have control of the situation? Did I stay in control of myself? Was I well prepared and ready for change? Was I trying to force my way through? Was I trying to make something happen when it didn’t want to happen?  Just as we can examine and fix our martial technique, we can examine our lives in the same way. We don’t have to be afraid of frustration if we are willing to look for an answer. When we do find an answer, we are more powerful for it, both in and out of the dojo.


Jess Burleigh SMAC student said...

I often find myself in the same situation, causing my own frustration by doubting what I know, what I can do, and over thinking what I am doing.

I was lucky enough to attend festival and New England Warrior Camp all in one week this year. A common theme between the two was giving in and going with the attack. It was not until the second time I took Jon Merz's session, that this concept really hit me. I am my most dangerous attacker. I must give in and go with things. When I do, things just happen and work. I must stop fighting with myself, at the dojo and in life.

Thank you for sharing Jane!

Anonymous said...

Hi Jess,
I think it's remarkable how often we need to hear these lessons and how they deepen over time. Thanks for sharing your insights too!
Mary Aitoshi

Anonymous said...

Often when someone makes something looks so easy (i.e., practically whenever Jane trains on the mat), it is tempting to think the journey is a breeze for that person. I love this post for the sheer reminder that EVERYONE--especially the very skilled people--all go through their own struggles to get to where they are. Furthermore, it urges me to embrace the struggles as guarantees that I will be getting better because of them.

Joe B said...

Leaving the fear of being wrong and being ok with it, is something that I wrote on my intention stick during festival. I found at some point we worry so much about things that we forget what is going on in front of us.

Thanks for sharing Jane

Jane Bright said...

I am constantly amazed by how much I have learned at the dojo that I use everyday that is seemingly unrelated to the physical practice. This path has helped shape how I see the world, which helps me on and off the mat. Thanks to everyone for reading part of my story and sharing your reflections.

Stephen K. Hayes Pro Shop

1501 Lee Hill Road #18|Boulder, Colorado 80304|Phone: 303.440.3647|Email: