Be willing to kill your darlings

William Faulkner once said “In writing, you must kill your darlings.” In writing, it’s often considered an important part of the writing method. The idea is that you need to be willing to cull all of the overly-dressed and precious things that you are attached to because it removes you from your sense of objectivity.

Essentially, this is just simple critical thinking and it applies far more broadly than just to writing, martial art practice or study.  Continue reading “Be willing to kill your darlings”

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What’s the worst that can happen? Nap time.

The worst part about waking up from a submission- induced nap is the confusion, “What happened? Did I tap? What day is it?”. Consciousness lurches back like a car being pushed out of a bog and we bashfully wonder why we didn’t just tap.

There are two eventualities when we decide that tapping isn’t the desirable option: the nap or the snap. For the uninitiated; joint locks will eventually lead to snaps and choke holds will eventually lead to a nap.

I’ve only been totally unconscious from chokes twice (so far): once in training and once in competition. Of course, there have been countless other times where I found myself embracing the tunnel vision/ Looney Toons close out before tapping & feeling the static and numbness of a late tap. I’d like to reflect upon these “learning moments” and the benefits of an unexpected nap. Continue reading “What’s the worst that can happen? Nap time.”

What's the worst that can happen? Nap time.

The worst part about waking up from a submission- induced nap is the confusion, “What happened? Did I tap? What day is it?”. Consciousness lurches back like a car being pushed out of a bog and we bashfully wonder why we didn’t just tap.

There are two eventualities when we decide that tapping isn’t the desirable option: the nap or the snap. For the uninitiated; joint locks will eventually lead to snaps and choke holds will eventually lead to a nap.

I’ve only been totally unconscious from chokes twice (so far): once in training and once in competition. Of course, there have been countless other times where I found myself embracing the tunnel vision/ Looney Toons close out before tapping & feeling the static and numbness of a late tap. I’d like to reflect upon these “learning moments” and the benefits of an unexpected nap. Continue reading “What's the worst that can happen? Nap time.”

The virtue of Curiosity

“Curious is a good thing to be, it seems to pay some unexpected dividends.”

Iggy Pop

In my current line of work, I’ve noticed that the most curious kids tend to be the ones who find the most satisfaction- and success- in learning. They ask hard questions about things others take for granted, never satisfied with a simple “Just because” answer. Curiosity leads to a desire to know more; to learn more, see more and do more. 

My philosophy teachers always expounded the principal of honesty in ignorance: Accept that there are things you don’t know. The more that I realized I was uncertain about, the more curious I became to find out what the truth was, if indeed there was any to be found at all.

Curiosity leads us down the paths often left untraveled by the timid or tame. It leads us away from the deceit offered up by matronly comfort and shows us the way to independence and resilience. Curiosity is a teacher that never questions your ability to experience and learn something new.

I think back to some of the most amazing experiences I’ve had so far, and they all come from a place of curiosity. I’m no more or less curious than anyone else as a person, if anything I used to be far from it. But upon reflection, it’s the “What ifs” and “Why is” that have lead me to places,  people and experiences that I would never have imagined as a twenty year old. Curiosity also lead me to Jiu-jitsu, which without I would undoubtedly not be here to write this. 

Einstein said “Once you stop learning, you start dying.”, but I would adjust it so:

Once you stop learning, you are dead. 

Being curious means leading a life full of learning; accepting that we can always find out more about ourselves and the world we live in. If you’re not doing that, or at least trying to in some small way every day, then you’re not really alive.

Foster your sense of curiosity. You will thank yourself for it later.

Thanks for reading.

Oss.

 

Accepting change

Change is constant. Every waking moment presents you with a new opportunity for both positive and negative change.

If you begin to look at personal growth in this way, you can create a lot of opportunities for growth and change your life for the better.

Don’t fall behind in your pursuit for personal growth because of a failure to accept change.

To benefit from change, we must accept two things: That change is a signal for growth and that no one is too perfect to grow.

We can all learn something new about ourselves as long as we embrace change and new opportunities.

What isn’t going to help is when we cut ourselves off from these chances to grow because of the potential discomfort or fear.

Objectivity versus Relativity: An exploration of perspective and reflection

Two of the most important things I have learnt in the fields of education and Philosophy are Objectivity and Relativity.

Recently I’ve come to see just how broadly these two ways of thinking apply beyond just these two fields; particularly in my BJJ practice.

*For the sake of this exploration, I would like to work with the following definitions of Objectivity & Relativity.

1. Objectivity refers to concrete or set axioms (statements) of truth that do not shift regardless of which perspective they are examined from.

2. Relativity refers to statements which, depending on the perspective they are approached from, will have a subjective value; being either true or false depending on the conditions of the situation or person.

Let’s continue…

Continue reading “Objectivity versus Relativity: An exploration of perspective and reflection”

A car crash in Seoul

“Someone should do something about that.” 

Sometimes we have no choice but to be that someone.

I took a trip to South Korea in 2015, it was the first time I had ever traveled solo.

A significant event, a late night car crash on the streets of Seoul, made me choose between being an onlooker, saying “Someone should do something.” or being that someone.  Continue reading “A car crash in Seoul”