So much of what we do to improve our BJJ is about physical improvement. This over looks the largest part of what will really determine our over all success- Our mind set. In order to better understand the Mental approach that will help us most as we are challenged by BJJ we have to rewind and start at the beginning.
Why did you start Brazilian Jiu-jitsu?
This is an important part of understanding your mental approach to a series of challenges that you will face on a repeating loop as you run the BJJ gauntlet. Sometimes the challenges are so great it will have you questioning your sanity and why you even bother showing up to class? Everyone’s motivation to train is different. From the young Kid learning self defence to develop confidence, the aspiring world champion who lives on the mats and even the working professional – just getting to class is a big win for them.
The one thing they have in common is they must show up. How much they learn, how hard they roll and how much they enjoy the experience will vary wildly. But if they do not show up the race will go on without them and they are one less session advanced in their knowledge and experience of jiu-jitsu.
Tenacity; the fact or quality of being very determined.
Showing up to class on a consistent basis takes time, energy and Tenacity. There are many things you may need to over come to get yourself to training but the biggest hurdle of all is your ability to commit! To tell yourself ” I am going to jiu-jitsu class no matter what.”
If everyone trained based on how they felt before training then almost no one would train as this is when you are at peak Internal Resistance. You know that feeling that holds everyone back from telling a joke that might not work, the fear that stops you from asking out your crush, the tightness in your chest that stops you from quitting the job you hate but still show up to every day. Internal Resistance is the killer of creativity and freedom of expression because we feel we will fail before we have even attempted to TRY.
The amount of Internal Resistance you feel is built up over the course of days, weeks, months and even years. A mixture of past losses, criticisms, feelings of inadequacy, negative self talk or pride holding us back from the very thing that will kill all that internal chatter and help release the discomfort that we are not enough. That thing is going to BJJ.
How to build The BJJ Mindset
- MAKE IT A RULE: Don’t make it a decision, make it a RULE. If you want to commit to something and ensure that you do it take the decision making out of the equation. Whether you are quitting smoking, eating healthy or just trying to get more sleep make your new behaviour a RULE. Other people are far less likely to mess with a Rule than just a Decision, even you. “My Rule is 3 BJJ sessions a week.” No compromise, you don’t need to explain it, write them down, get a tattoo or just live by your rules.
2. FAILURE ENSURES SUCCESS: Every time you fail, you have simply learnt another way not to do something. You are now less wrong than you were before. The more mistakes you make the closer you get to the truth of success. For many people fear of failure really contributes to Internal Resistance. When you go to train BJJ you are guaranteed to fail at something but this is key to learning. The humility that comes from constantly having confront your lack of knowledge is one of the best things about BJJ. It teaches us we don’t know it all and that’s ok. Embracing this guaranteed failure means you will have success in the moment and in the long term.
3.GET THERE: The process of showing up to the academy consistently is it’s own battle. So make it a fight you will win. Always have your training bag packed in your car ready to go. Make your RULE and stick to it- “I leave work at 5pm.” No exception. this way you will have time to get to training even if there is peak hour traffic. Even if you are 30 minutes late for any reason GET THERE! Your coach will respect your dedication to make the effort to be there. Even though you might be injured GET THERE! Learn by watching the technique and observe the rolling rounds. Strengthen your connection to this thing you love, the greater the connection the greater the personal reward.
The key to being more Tenacious starts with the idea that you want to do something and that nothing will sway you from your decision. Once your mind is made up you are doing it, bad weather, flat tire, terrible boss be damned! Make your rules and Live by them. Embrace failure as the path to your ultimate success. Ultimately personal success is about the most important form of respect you can have Self Respect. Keeping your promises to yourself build self respect and destroys Internal Resistance. Get There, prove it to your self that you can do it. Every time you do your will becomes stronger and ultimately you will be a living example of Tenacity.