There used to be those good old days when our excitement would surge when we would learn something new as kids. That would be usually followed by a month of constant practice of the same thing over and over again, until we got bored with it or we were taught something new. This excitement served us well to train our muscle memory(though we didn’t know what muscle memory was back then). Our Sensei would also feel the excitement and would be willing to lead us in every possible way.
But then, something happened that shouldn’t have. We grew up to become complacent instead of being mature. The spark that used to light in us became past tense, creating a gap between our current knowledge and our future knowledge. Going to the dojo would be to meet our friends and practice kumite, and nothing more than that. This is when most of the seniors in the dojo left because of many reasons. Some got jobs far away, while some went away for further studies, or some just left because the spark of excitement went missing.This left me as the only senior left in the dojo and I had to help my Sensei in teaching the new kids and the beginners.
This was the new experience that ultimately brought back the spark which I was looking for. Everyday of teaching in turn taught me something new. Some part of it was related to the martial arts philosophy, where as some parts were psychological. This new responsibility made me prepare for every class as the juniors were full of questions just like I was when i had started training. Answering their questions in a way they understand is one tough job. I am sure many Senseis will agree, because this is when I actually started to study about stuffs like Martial Arts philosophy, New techniques, Weight training for martial artists and some new experimentation
Another thing this new experience taught me was a lot of patience. It does take a lot of patience to teach the new comers especially when most of them are just 5 to 8 years old. Patience obviously helps us to realize our goals of self-actualization. Trust me. Start teaching and you will not even realize that when patience becomes a part of your personality.
So, now let us enumerate the things learnt from this new experience:
- Complacency has no place in our lives unless we want to lose everything.
- Teaching gives a sense of satisfaction and also helps us to learn.
- Patience is the key.
- Interaction with the students is one way you can understand the concept “Back to the Basics” and the importance of the phrase.
- Choose your path for self-actualization carefully.
- Always remember, that your Sensei can still teach you a great deal even if you have a Black Belt. After all experience counts!
In learning you will teach, and in teaching you will learn.
– Phil Collins