Those of us training in this system have heard repeatedly of phrases like “Your practice is never over”, “You’ll always keep learning and discovering new things”, “It takes as long as it takes”, “Be patient with yourself”, etc. Those that hear that and get frustrated and stop, I wonder if they realize that it’s not only the case with your training, but with everything in life. We don’t just stop growing. We don’t stop learning – It’s almost impossible. So why give up? Why stop something that could potentially open you up to other possibilities. I’m not just saying this about this particular practice, but about anything. If no one practiced, no one would be good at anything. Day in and day out we are inundated with media force feeding us wonder stories of people that can do amazing things and we look and we watch and think “I wish I could do that” – but do you ever consider the work it took them to get to that point? Sure, everyone is different, some take longer or shorter than others, but no matter what – it doesn’t happen in an instant. Those people found something they were passionate about and kept working at it, day after day, and I can almost guarantee they are still working at it to learn and discover new avenues. If you took same amount of time you take staring at those people and wondering how they could accomplish something like that, I imagine you could find something within yourself that you could accomplish too.
Our training is the same. Our system of kung fu is so complex, even those studying for 20, even 30 plus years are still learning – isn’t that amazing?? It excites me to see what will I discover that far down the road. It surprises me even weeks, or months later when I reach that “ah-ha” moment of something I’ve been doing repetitions of for a long time and discovered a new technique out of it that I would not have discovered had I not put in the time. On the other side of that, it catches me off guard when I realize how uncoordinated I still am. There are times I stand there with this what I imagine is a dumbfounded look on my face waiting for that moment of something clicking. I often wonder how I look to my peers in those moments. I feel I must just look so silly, but I know it’s me taking the time to process that information and letting it sink it. So realizing those things are important too. It forces me to reevaluate what I thought I knew, and seek out other alternatives and eventually I’ll take another step in the right direction.
Everyone wants instant gratification. It’s hard not to fall victim to that given the society we live in today. It took me, well, most of my life at this point to finally realize that with slow, diligent, focused time, I WILL in fact improve. My last post was about acceptance on the road to peace. This all comes out of that. Patience and practice consistently over time and you will continue to grow and learn and you should be excited by that fact alone. Imagine what you can accomplish! In the 6 years of my practice in kung fu, I have become so much stronger, and I am no longer the frail, weak person I was before. In the 6 years of my practice, I was able to establish more patience with myself, which in turn put me more in focus to help with my all other aspects of my life as well.