Back in the day, while playing high school sports, the coach often stated “You will play the way your practice!” Now, all these years later, is another illustration of that concept. Yes, I know that it isn’t anything new but the timing in finding it is good.

I have watched students come to class and do things that they called “working” then they proceeded to tell me how capable they are in the material. As they started to focus on preparing for a rank promotion, I watched them do their material over and over. Each time looked the same…same good techniques, same poor techniques.

I don’t know if it was the lack of understanding my directions or the lack of understanding what the differences are. This is definitely a learning point. If they knew what I wanted but didn’t make improvements, then they were failing at being students. The physical techniques are only 10% of an art and should be improved through intellectual understanding of the other 90%. This is the student’s responsibility. It made me think of an academic analogy. You are given two 50 problem mathematics worksheets. The first is 50 problems are all 1+1=. The second is a mix through algebra. If you only do the first, then you are only “doing”. If you do both, you are “becoming”. I’m not one big on just “doing martial arts”. I much more prefer “becoming a martial artist”.

The memories of the star high school athletes come back. Only now is the recognition of how hard they were working is understood…often because they made it look easy. The majority of these people continue on to be successes in all they pursue.

As the post goes and relating to the quote, someone truly “becoming” must also have the willingness to embrace the suck. Most of the learning will be challenging. Much will also be demanding. Some will be completely disliked. That dislike is the suck. Working your way through the suck is the way to make sure that you “become” what you are working toward. This is also where you find support and can be of service because there will be others working through the suck also. They are your brothers and sisters.

If you don’t choose to embrace the suck and get the real work done, you’ll never know what you could have “become”. Don’t waste your opportunities! Learn, work, and BECOME!

Author: Master Robert Frankovich

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