raise your thermostat, overcome your limitations

Jiu-Jitsu training is designed to raise your thermostat, to help you to overcome your limitations. Your temperature may rise in the classroom, but will your overall understanding of your personal capabilites also increase?

The objective of the martial arts is to expand the range of your “self” – not only your self-confidence but your whole self-concept. Once we start that project, we can move from a place of insecurity to a place of certainty and security.

Insecurity has a lot of different disguises. It doesn’t always show up like shy, scared person. Lots of times it shows up as arrogance, overconfidence, elitism and entitlement.

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Jiu-Jitsu practice is about raising your standards to overcome your limitations.

It’s got a mask. So when we’re talking about raising our self-concept, our self-confidence, our thermostat in life, one of the things we have to do is peel away the different masks that disguise our insecurities.

Jiu-Jitsu allows us to do that. When you become really centered, present and you’re not worried about being so vulnerable, you can have more confidence to peel away the mask.

I think a lot of people try these concepts out, see a little success and then they stop. It works so well that they stop doing it.

That’s one of the major pitfalls both in Jiu-Jitsu and for our larger plans of self-improvement. We have to watch out for this tendency to start but not finish. We will get our nose just a little bit out of the water so that we can breathe, but we stop there. We never take our head, shoulders or body out and start walking away from the danger. We never get out of the deep water.

We see a little bit of success and then we slide back into the old habits and comforts.

In Jiu-Jitsu, backsliding is not an option. And in life, backsliding is not an option. Contrary to what you may think, if something’s not growing, it doesn’t just stay there. It dies. Maintaining is not gaining.

That’s why our project here is for every student (and instructor) to think about constantly raising their thermostat, their capacity, not to be afraid to adjust and peel away the different guises that insecurity takes. It’s the only way to stay alive.


For more about the larger project of cooperative Jiu-Jitsu and martial arts training, visit the Brooklyn Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (Brooklyn BJJ) website here .

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