Learning to Let Go

Learning to Let Go

I read an article once about how various cultures perceive time differently and it just changed my life for ever (light bulb moment). In North America for example, time is linear, meaning when you make an appointment for 5pm, it means 5pm on the clock.

In a Middle Eastern country, time is cyclical, meaning an appointment at 5pm means anytime after I finish work and before dinner (who knows when that is?!). For North Americans time is money hence their focus on deadlines and punctuality. For Middle Easterns, doing the job right and maintaining harmony is more important than being on time.

Ta Da!! Years of frustrations dealing with both cultures explained in one simple idea! People really do mean well, it’s just that their way does not fit mine all the time.

Most people’s frustrations, including mine, come from exactly that: "You're not doing it my way!" But when you come to terms with the fact that the only person you have control over is yourself, you can shift your focus on to managing your own expectations of others, rather than trying to control the uncontrollable.

Letting go and giving up control. This conversation has come up with a few members recently. In martial arts, beginners have a tendency to want to know everything right now. They want to be a black belt (or move like one) over night!

But you eventually realize that it doesn’t work that way. You learn to give up that need to be in control and trust that your training will get you where you want to be. You look forward to making mistakes so that you can learn from them.

Most importantly you learn to move mindfully and to be aware of your body so that you can recognize where you need improvement.

In time, training Jiu Jitsu becomes a mindfulness practice that teaches you to let go and helps you deal with your daily frustrations and find peace within the chaos of your day. Not a bad side effect!

Renshi Melhem Wehbe (Owner & Head Instructor, 100% Martial Arts & Fitness - Embrun)

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