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Seeking Zanshin: Blood, Sweat, Tears & Aikikai Blog Tools Rating: Rate This Blog
Creation Date: 02-24-2005 11:53 PM
One small gal + a dojo full of big guys = tons o' fun
Blog Info
Status: Public
Entries: 270 (Private: 12)
Comments: 195
Views: 817,780

In General Feeling Back to Normal Again Entry Tools Rate This Entry
  #100 New 02-18-2004 11:58 PM
...and thank goodness.

I spoke to an older friend of mine at work yesterday about how things have been going, practicing for the Gokkyu test. She's an energy healer and a former Shodan in Judo, and had some insightful things to say --- rather, she helped point me in the right direction.

"This isn't about being perfect," she said. "this is about where you are right now." And she's right. I realized that I needed to stop nitpicking and just let myself do what I naturally do, to the best of my ability. "My body instinctively knows how to move when I'm completely focused," I said. She then told me that I already know for myself the answer that I seek. "So what do you need to do?" she asked me. I paused and thought for a moment. Then it occured to me. All of a sudden, it seemed so simple. I couldn't believe that I hadn't noticed it before. "I need to breathe. I got all pent up yesterday during the test run-through because I stopped paying attention to my breathing."

So I did. We ran through my test first tonight. And guess what? It worked! It no longer felt as labourous or clumsy as before. It felt so...free. And a couple of times, when things didn't happen with uke quite the way you'd normally expect, I laughed. It was great!

For the rest of the night, I worked on Katatedori Koshinage [note to self: remember to touch the floor with your free hand] with my Sempais (who practiced Shomenuchi Gokkyo in Suwari Waza on me --- aka "ouch, that's nasty!") and Katatedori Shihonage with our newest student.

Two more days to test time...and it's no longer me feeling like, "let's just get this bloody thing over with" --- I'm actually starting to look forward to it.
Views: 813 | Comments: 2

RSS Feed 2 Responses to "Feeling Back to Normal Again"
#2 02-20-2004 10:47 AM
jducusin Says:
Thanks for the encouragement from both you and your Sensei, Kelly --- sorry I missed that post; things have been so hectic playing "catch up" with work that I haven't been dwelling on AikiWeb much these days. I'll try to find it right away. I don't know if it was so much "not feeling ready" as it was just "stage fright" --- although I've done a lot of performing in the past (mostly musical, and as part of a group) as well as a great deal of solo public speaking over the past 16 years, I had never before had to do something completely physical all by myself for an "official audience". I think that I was more afraid of messing up when it mattered most than anything else. Thankfully, all I needed was just to really breathe --- that got me right in focus (instead of thinking, "eek! I'm being watched and evaluated!") and let my body just do it's thing. My friend really is great; she's the kind of mentor who asks more questions than she gives answers, and thus lets you figure things out for yourself --- a method that I highly respect. I'm also proud to say that just the other day at work, I was also able to return the favour and also give her some words of encouragement as well.
#1 02-19-2004 01:09 AM
Kelly Allen Says:
I agree with your friend. Read comment in your third last post from me. BTW my sensei concurs. Relax, have fun, and come back as a Gokyu. You have a highly respected, and extremely talented Sensei. He wouldn't let you test if he didn't think you were ready. Kelly

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