The Dry Spell

The Dry Spell.  It's a time in one's BJJ journey in which nothing seems to be working as planned and motivation is waning.  It's not uncommon and I could argue it's actually normal. I suspect most have experienced it and will likely experience it again throughout the journey.

I personally have experienced several dry spells.  Some were in part due to the everyday trappings of life.  Trappings such as working late, sick children, injuries or other activities which conflict with the ability to attend a Jiu Jitsu class. However I've also experienced other distractions not necessarily reflective of my daily commitments.  Distractions such as a slump or beat down in my game, without even the smallest of successes to hang a hope on to.  Or worse yet, how others viewed my progress and/or my game. Whatever the dry spell reason, one has to remind themselves why they participate in Jiu Jitsu in the first place.

Recently our professor touched on this very subject.  The irony being, I had already started writing out my thoughts but had yet to finish them.  Our professor reminded us to think about what brought us to Jiu Jitsu in the first place, next time we hit a low spot.   He also encouraged us to think about both the good and bad motivators of our journey.

As previously mentioned in another post, what brought me to Jiu Jitsu was my kids first.  However over time, I became involved personally by the cajoling of others.  But that didn't necessarily keep me coming back.  What kept me returning was the people.  I truly felt a special bond with the community.  I, along with the rest of my family began to develop relationships.   Some meaningful, others cordial.  In any event though, I felt welcomed and wanted.  What also kept me coming back was just the shear mental determination to not quit and to continually thirst for improvement.  A drive to improve myself in very small, meaningful increments and to do so without burning out.

However that which kept me coming back, at times also kept me in doubt as well.  For as my blog title so aptly describes..."I'm just an average BJJ practitioner looking to excel in a young man's sport".  So at times I've struggled with jealousy. Watching others advance quicker than me.  And truthfully that's not a poor reflection on those who earned it. It's just me being a human.  In addition I've struggled with how others view my performance.  At times I've caught certain people watching my performance and wondered what they were thinking.  However I refused to ask because I didn't want to appear arrogant or worse yet, hear the truth I may not be ready to accept.  But these insecurities can all be traced back to my ego.  As our Professor has reminded us, our ego can be our worst enemy.  Thus me becoming a victim of my ego and creating a self induced dry spell.

So what is the magical potion of overcoming a dry spell?  I don't know.  I can only say that I have to heed the words of my professor about reminding myself why I joined (stayed) in the first place.  And to also remember that I need to check my ego at the door.  For me the magical potion is to attend class consistently and refuse those thoughts which are the result of a fragile ego.  It will always be a daily battle.  I'll have to fight constantly but in the end, a cause I believe is worth fighting for.

Therefore my encouragement to you is to grind always.

Peace, Love & Chokes

Will h.





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