I went to my first Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu class last week. This was something that I had been wanting to do for a very long time. For some reason (probably fear) I kept putting it off and off. I am a fan of the art, as well as the life philosophy it teaches, having read a lot about the Gracie family, and the origins of the sport. So I decided that I would stop putting it off, I would call the nearest Gracie Barra Academy, and sign myself up for a class.
I had to admit, the initial thought of another grown man forcing me into painful positions, with a goal of making me “submit” or “tap out” (the goal in Jiu-Jitsu) did create a touch of fear. So after donning my traditional gi (which felt very unusual to wear), and looking at the purple and brown belts warming up (being a first timer my belt was shining white), the fear became very real and for a moment I asked myself “why am I here again?
But I stayed, and I’m glad I did. After warming up, our instructor demonstrated a “simple” move, which would be the basis for the class. It was a technique to get a person off of you when you are in a “half-guard” position (basically you are on your back or side, and a person’s full body weight is on you, and you have one leg in between their legs and the other leg on the outside). The focus of the class was to drill this move over and over until we got it right.
As we started to practice I found great difficulty with this technique. My partner (my brother) is a large guy and outweighs me significantly. It seemed that no matter how hard I tried, no matter how hard I pushed, I couldn’t get him off me. I was starting to feel very frustrated as I lied on the ground, sweaty in strange PJs, trying to get a 230 pound guy off me. I have definitely been in better situations.
Then the instructor came over and very simply moved my foot, ever so slightly, to a different, angle. This created a leverage position and with this position I was able to use my legs to flip my much larger brother over and off me.
Fascinating, that the smallest adjustment created massive leverage – enough so that with ease I could do something that I previously didn’t have the ability to do (even using all of my strength).
After the class I thought about this principle and its applicability to my business and life. What are the slightest adjustments that you can make right now that can have a massive payoff:
– Perhaps in your focus (focusing only on what you want, not on what you don’t want or what you fear);
– Perhaps in your habits (eliminating a bad habit, or creating a new positive one);
– Perhaps in your effectiveness (adopting a behaviour that creates massive leverage in your life);
– Perhaps in your daily routine (starting with a visualization of the successful achievement of your desired end-goal, instead of just the routine “rush” to start the day.
Sometimes, as I learned in Jiu-Jitsu, the smallest adjustment can make all the difference.