I remember a friend saying something to me once and it was genius. It answered so many questions that I had as an instructor.
When I’m looking at a student that isn’t getting the results they want, I bounce back and forth between the thoughts of “Are they working hard enough” and “Are they just not ready” and that’s what this week’s message of the week is about.
Last week I went to my karate class and after class, my instructor and I started talking about how our school was going. I told him that over the last few years, I’ve seen a real improvement in the quality of our students. They’re performing better katas, sparring better and I believe that overall, they’re much fitter. In general, I’m really happy with how the school is going. When he asked me what made the improvement, I cited a number of different sources.
That same week, I was talking with my BJJ instructor and mentioned that I was really frustrated with my training. I’ve hit a real roadblock with a partner of mine and I just can’t figure out how to get around it. I’ve trained and drilled but still haven’t made any progress. As a result of all this, I haven’t trained in a couple of weeks.
I remember when I was younger, training a specific drill and it just not clicking. No matter how hard I tried, I just couldn’t seem to get it and eventually I lost my temper. When that happened, my teacher at the time said something to me that may have had more influence on me than anything he had ever said.
Looking back, it’s so obvious and since that time, I’ve gone on to apply his advice in many different parts of my life. What he said was…
I had this student start class last night and they said to me that they’d been thinking of taking karate for quite a while. They had been humming and hawing over it, tiptoeing around the idea, balancing the pros and cons. However you want to say it, they finally started last night, did a fantastic job and I think they really enjoy their time.
Afterwards, I thought about what would have happened in 5 10 15 20 years, had they not tried it? What if in that time frame, they end up with these big regrets?
This week’s MOTW is born out of me trying to put together the MOTW.
No matter what you are working towards, at some point you are going to hit roadblocks or bumps in the road and so this week, as you go through the week, understand that being frustrated by them is part of the process of achieving what you want.