Complacency :self-satisfaction especially when accompanied by unawareness of actual dangers or deficiencies
I would like to start off this week with saying congratulations to both Ray “The Judge” Rodriguez and Chris “Rakoon” Kuntschik. Both guys walked into the cage this past weekend and represented their craft and our family. No matter the outcome proud of both you guys.
This weeks Powerful Word is Complacency. Complacency is the great antagonist/ adversary to progress or success in your game. It is such an easy trap to fall into that most of the time you are unaware of when you grow complacent. Be on the lookout for areas that you have grown complacent in your game because these will be the areas that cause you to plateau.
In Chris’s fight this past Saturday he successfully took his opponent down and was beginning to work from the top in Closed Guard. So far everything was going according to plan. What happened in the next minute and thirty two seconds was the epitome of complacency. Chris was able to feel the sense of urgency and panic start to set in for his opponent. He began to relax which isn't necessarily a bad thing. Relaxing in a fight or a match is an important concept except for if you relax too much and become too complacent for the moments that followed. Complacency by definition is a, “self satisfaction especially when accompanied by unawareness of actual danger or deficiencies.” In Chris’s match this past weekend he was %100 comfortable with his opponent attacking his neck via guillotine because he felt confident in his position, escape, and letting his opponent wear himself out. Chris in my opinion was spending too much time planning the future instead of being present in the moment. How many of you have felt that moment where in an instant everything just up and changes. All of a sudden that position that felt so safe. That position that you were so confident in becomes the position of your undoing. My heart goes out for Chris and anyone else that you see this happen to but this is the nature of the game. It is because of this truth that you have to fight to never become complacent in the moment. Always stay every ready in the void of the moment. Not planning the future or worrying about past mistakes.
Another of example of how Complacency is relevant in Jiu Jitsu can be shown by referring to what i like to call the four pillars of Jiu Jitsu.
I can’t tell you how many students that i have seen grow complacent with that first pillar, survive. This is the first goal of mine for every student that i every work with. However it is not enough just to survive but still i see students plateau at this stage of development all the time. Why? I don’t know the answer but if i was to take a stab at it… i would say that it is an inherit instinct in all of us to survive. It is not an instinct to continue to make the investment in losing that it takes to progress your game. The commitment to putting yourself in the fire. The commitment to the grind that will strip away the excess in your game and mold you into the champion you were always destined to be. Survival is an instinct while progress is habit. One that has to be honed and trained. Complacency is the biggest obstacle that will always hinder your effectiveness of this habit. I want to also add that complacency can happen at any point in the 4 pillars. You can easily grow complacent with surviving, progressing, dominating and also in your finishes. I only highlighted a specific area that seems to be an obstacle that i have observed over the last ten years of teaching Jiu Jitsu.
So in conclusion, this week examine your game from every aspect. Try to identify the parts of your game that you have grown complacent in. Challenge yourself to not accept what is easy but embrace change and growth. Seek out the positions that you stay away from and also the ones that you feel too comfortable in. Cause just like we saw this weekend with Chris; anything can happen. Learn to love your growing pains in Jiu Jitsu. Don't let complacency be the adversary that brings you down.
Professor Jason Yerrington