I was recently at the AKA warrior cup and let me tell you, it was an experience. There were highs and lows and some moments that I can’t describe as anything other than “beautiful.”
And because of that, there were plenty of opportunities for me to step back from what I was doing and really take a look. And, like many times when you step back from something and really consider it, there were some mixed results.
So, here goes.
The thing about karate and sport, in general, is this idea of pushing beyond the boundaries of self in the pursuit of something greater. This is by no means confined to just sport, but it’s easily seen and celebrated in it constantly. Just look at any professional league, it’s inundated with triumphant stories of athletes overcoming hardships and doing amazing things. Hero’s are everywhere, and they should be. This weekend I watched (and photographed) Kam Dawson do something amazing, I was there for Joey Castro winning his first Warrior Cup, and I watched dozens more have dreams achieved or dashed on the rocks. Essentially, I watched heroes of the sport do amazing things.
Now, the issue our whole sport has right now of not having a consistent platform with which to celebrate, elevate, and promote these heroes to something other than “Oh yeah, I remember that guy/woman/person…they were pretty good!” a few years down the line is a completely different topic, but it’s one that is starting to be discussed. So, for all the storytellers out there, keep it up, slowly things are changing.
Or at least, that’s what I tell myself when struck with the late night traffic and I ponder all the problems in the world.
Heroes are made every day, and they all have something in common. And it’s not winning, (though, that does help).
Passion for their sport, for their endeavor, for their successes and especially their failures. And this type of passions, when you are thrown into it and live in the chaos and meaty bustle of it for days on end. It has a way of changing your perspective.
It’s something I’ve written about before, and something I chew on (also in traffic) all the time. I watch these great figures go out and absolutely kill it on stage, or in training, or while teaching. And I look at that and think. “Wow! What could I do, to get closer to that?”
It’s an Occham’s razor type of problem. There are a thousand things I could do, try, and push for. But all it takes is work and time. Simple as that. Passion is not sustained by magic. Passionate people, I’m sure, do not wake up every day 1000% motivated to do everything in their power to excel and succeed. They have off days too, but the thing they have in spades is the ability to work insanely and incredibly hard in pursuit of those passions. They commit, and they push towards it. Their hustle is unbelievable.
As of late, I’ve been feeling stuck. Kind of lost in the same rut, wandering the same path and doing the same things. I love my business, I love the people I work with and I even, in a weird way, love the drive. But there’s something missing. That sense of working towards something greater. Over the last 10 years, I’ve been, more or less, doing the same forms, competing the same way, and performing about the same. I think it’s time to change it up. Find something exciting and new, and jump in the deep end with both feet.
Because the one thing that will kill passion is stagnation. Thinking the same way and doing the same thing, over and over, until the end of time and the inevitable heat death of the universe. That’s not being a hero, that’s being a robot. A boring one.
So, cat’s out of the bag.
I’m working on some new stuff. I’m trying to learn more and find that something that I’ve been looking for. Everything I do now, I love, and the act of me searching, doesn’t change that at all. It will only let me look at it in a new light, and with some fresh perspective.