Thursday, October 11, 2012


Many years ago during one of our annual retreats, there was a discussion about who was being picked to play what parts.  In response to that, I said “every time you step on the mat, you’re being evaluated.”  And just the other day, in talking about a week full of seminars culminating in my next black belt test, I got told that “basically, the whole thing is your test.”

So what does this all mean for you?

Your group may have a system to determine who’s ready to play a certain spot or get to the next ranking, but it’s silly to think that there’s only a short window of time that you’re being evaluated in.  Everything you’ve done up unto that point – good and bad – is taken into account.  Have you taken to new spots well in the past?  Do you self-correct?  Have you been trying hard overall, not just for one particular spot?  Do you help others who are trying to learn the spot you got?  Do you get uppity when you get new spots?  All of that plus more come into play.

Sure, it’s easy to just say you need to be the perfect role-model and exemplary student when you practice, but none of us are perfect.   So instead realize that everything you do in practice (and sometimes outside of practice) is part of the audition for your next…everything!

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