Some philosophize that martial art training is supposed to chip away at the junk surrounding our core selves, or remodeling us into someone who is "better". The mental training aspect of aikido has been attributed to emphasize relaxation of mind and body even under stressful situations, as i understand it to better handle being attacked but to also make daily life simpler and more enjoyable .
Ueshiba is quoted as saying that one "must be willing to receive 99% of an opponent's attack and stare death in the face". Staring death in the face is one thing, all bravery and calmness focused on one extreme idea, but i think it's a lot harder for those ideas to challenge the everyday things we face. Everyone can tell a story about how something has made them lose their cool, it's just human nature. Sooner or later something will come along that will bother the hell out of even the most stoic person.
I am by no means one of those stoic people. Insecurity is one of the things that reoccurs in my mind as i train. I am my own worst critic and i often berate myself over a misplaced step, a technique done wrong or "poorly", or as in the case of seeing video with me in it: the way i look while moving around and especially falling. There are several things i could list off as to why i beat myself up but the fact remains that it's really not a good thing to do whether necessary or not. As i sit around and sorta meditate on aikido i often try to tackle what i can do to improve my ability. Practice and patience seem to be the top two keys and not necessarily in that order. Something that has seemed to be more important lately is how i perceive myself in aikido, what am i bringing with me into the dojo and what am i trying to sorta leave behind me on the way out. More important than both of those is what i'm carrying around day to day?
Something i think helps, and i think a lot of people have trouble with this, is what kind of goal you've place in front of yourself. Is it realistic? Are you expecting it to occur much faster than it should? Are you trying to be good for your level or someone else's? There's nothing wrong with wanting to improve, but sometimes things just "are as they are". Looking at where i am in relation to others that i see as better could make anyone in the same shoes feel discouraged. I have to remind myself that sure, someone else at my rank may be way ahead of the curve but what's important is am i refining "me"? "Am i moving from my center instead of trying to reach out to something that will throw me off balance," so to speak.
Just some thoughts. Next lesson, practicing what i preach. Haha
Anyone have any thoughts?