How martial arts prepared me for writing
In my late high school/ early university years I trained in martial arts. More specifically I trained in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. BJJ is a grappling martial art, one that is extremely complicated and technical. It can take years, decades to become truly proficient at, if ever at all.
When you start, it is like you are drowning. You have no idea what the other person is trying to do, all you can do is try to keep you head above water and survive. You fail, over and over. Get submitted, over and over. Hundreds of times. Every other person in the gym is better, almost unfathomably so.
Yet day by day you learn, you improve slowly, one thing at a time. The progress is so gradual you don’t see it in real time. It creeps up on you. Fast forward six months, a year and you’ll be amazed at how far you’ve come.How much better you are now then when you started. The current you would mop the floor with past you.
All you have to do is keep grinding and getting better. This mindset helped me prepare for the challenges of writing. It’s hardest at the start, almost insurmountably so. Each sentence is a struggle, so much so that you can hardly see past it.
Yet if you keep at it, it gets easier, you get better. Time passes and you improve, slowly.
You look back on your first writings and realize how far you’ve come and how far you still have to go. The impossible task suddenly seems doable. There’s hope, light at the end of the tunnel.
You can do it.
You just have to keep going. Keep improving.
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