Look for the Little Wins

Learning Jiu Jitsu has to be the most humbling experience of my life. It takes years to get good at it and has been compared to running a marathon as opposed to a sprint. I clearly have no natural talent for grappling and struggle learning every new move. In class, my training partners have to talk me through every new technique and sometimes I still don’t get it. I definitely forget everything for live training. In Randori (live training after class), my training partners frequently spend the whole session sitting on top of me, with me unable to escape.
Since it’s hard to see progress on a day to day basis, Coach Tony told me that I have to look for the little wins along the way. So that’s what I’ve been doing. If I can get out from under, it’s a win. If I go for 5 minutes without getting submitted, it’s a win. If I can successfully use a technique that I learned in class, it’s a win. If I stay uninjured, it’s a huge win. I haven’t submitted anyone yet, but now I find a win almost every session. This is a new mindset for me that I didn’t have 2 years ago when I first started training Jiu Jitsu, and it has changed everything.
A couple of weeks ago, I got the best win so far. I earned my second stripe! It’s a small thing but to me, it’s a major win. In fact, I almost teared up when Coach Tony called me up. And I smiled for a week after getting it. It makes me want to train even harder, which is also a win.

Jiu Jitsu Roll


I’m combining my love of visual art and the “Gentle Art” or Jiu Jitsu here. This is pen and ink on watercolor paper. I had thought of adding some color but like it in black and white. I wasn’t sure of the scribble style but have decided I like it as it has a very energetic feel to it.