Fear in Jiu-Jitsu. Fear in life.

I recently went to dinner with my friend and jiujitsu instructor of many many years and, as always, our conversation revolved around the topics of training, women, upcoming events and the psychology of combat. Incidentally, we talked a lot about fear.

I'm surrounded by fear. The podcasts I listen to talk about fear, both the martial arts ones and others. In my day job as a secondary school maths teacher, I constantly hear students and teachers alike talking about their fear. I even catch myself lost in a web of fear far more than I'd like to. Even at the gym I see and hear my friends talk about fear, act from fear or freeze and surrender to fear, as do I.

Notice that I refuse to pluralise it. Fear.

From what I've seen, there is only one true type of fear: the fear of not reaching some theoretical, usually positive, outcome.

Martial artists are afraid they won't achieve what they set out to. They set hypothetical goals and targets and work hard trying to reach the next milestone, whatever that may be. Often, however, it is not the challenge that breaks them but the fear of failing to conquer it.

Students fear exams, teachers or even their peers. Why? Because they have a picture of what reality should look like and they cling to it so hard that when it slips out of their hands it leaves them with nothing but rope burn. 

Fear is a huge part of the persistent illusion that is life. 

The best way to conquer fear is to...embrace it. 

Rickson Gracie says fear and intelligence are very close. 

Identify what's scaring you and go face it. Not figuratively. Literally. 

You don't even need to be specific to start off with. Just pick anything that scares you.

Senza paura.

On another note, here's what Tyson had to say about fear:

What fears went through Royce Gracie's mind when he stood across the ring from the giant, 220kg monster that is Akebono?

Senza paura.



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