In this episode, Jeremy talks about the importance of avoiding the use of your martial arts skills altogether.
Importance of Not Doing – Episode 247
The goal of martial arts is to not use your skills in an actual situation. We hear this concept all the time from seasoned martial arts instructors and practitioners but how do we really do it? In this episode, Jeremy explores the possibilities of avoiding getting in trouble in places that are usually hostile such as bars through the use of observation and predictive skills. Listen to this episode as Jeremy shares his personal experience with not doing.
You can read the transcript below or download here.
Hey there, welcome to whistlekick Martial Arts Radio episode 247. My name is Jeremy Lesniak, I’m your host for this show. I’m the founder of whistlekick sparring gear and apparel and today were going to talk about the importance of not doing. That’s a confusing title, isn’t it? And I’m going to tell you what it means in a moment. You I received feedback from folks, often in fact, about how they feel this show helps them in their martial arts which is surprising because there’s nothing physical about it and that’s actually what we’re going to talk about today. Some of these nonphysical elements, these non-doings and why they’re so important.
You know, if you’re not on the newsletter list, please jump in their head on over to whistlekickmartialartsradio.com there’s a pop-up that will get you, sign up, we’re gonna sending the newsletter periodically. We do wrap it up a little bit around the holidays because we offer some pretty good deals on our stuff. Not that our stuff is already a good deal, but the deals get a little better on the holidays do some exclusive discounts and other stuff. Of course, you could find that stuff at whistlekick.com don’t worry, all our sites are linked together all the different stuff that we do. So, check something out, find some other stuff and see how hopefully whistlekick can make your martial arts journey a little better. The title of today’s episode is the importance of not doing. What do I mean by that? Martial arts we tend to value the ability to do things, the quality of our techniques, the speed, the power, the accuracy, the ability to teach them to perform a pattern, a form to spar well. These are all actions these are all physical external actions. It doesn’t mean that there isn’t the internal component, there certainly is. But I’m not talking about not doing as in meditation. Meditation is important, we talked about meditation recently.
But there’s something in between, there is a skill set that we don’t often discuss and honestly, I think it is one of, if not the most important things someone can develop in life, whether you’re a martial artist or not. And that’s the ability to observe a situation and predicted the outcome. This is something we all do innately, we don’t think about it very much but because we don’t think about it, we don’t think about the ways we can improve it. It’s an important skill, it is something that can save your life. I’m not talking about a sixth sense, I’m not talking about trusting your gut which is again something very important we discussed on the show. I’m talking about the ability to be in a situation what’s called a social situation and see what is happening around you and make a prediction as to what is going to happen that you can then take action from. This is kind of a complicated way of expressing something that we all do. If you’ve ever been somewhere and said you know what those two over there, they’re gonna get into fight, I want to be around for that and you take off, that’s exactly what I’m talking about. This is important from martial arts setting because the better you are at observing and predicting the less you’ll have to use your physical skills. Something I am incredibly proud of but I don’t talk about much because I don’t want to jinx it, I’ve never been in a fight and this is 100% the reason why. It’s not that I don’t get out, it’s not that I’m not around people, it’s not that I don’t stand up for myself. In fact, I’ve had friends, they got to fight all the time. For a decade, my best friend was known for getting into fights but he never gotten fights when I was around. Because I was able to observe, predict the situation, there were few I had to diffuse and this is one of the things in my life I am most proud of. What’s better than winning a fight? Not getting in one. It is the only way you truly win a fight. If we think of ourselves as martial artists and our goal of developing personally, of having confidence, having inner strength, external strength, the best way to demonstrate that, is to not have to harm someone else. Is not about what you can do, it’s about what you don’t have to do to someone else. How do you develop the skill of observing and predicting? You watch people you really get out there and watch people. It is the number one way to do it and I don’t just mean sit in a coffee shop and watch folks walk by because you’re not gonna see the type of situations that were learning to predict. You got to get out in the mix, you gotta get into some kind a grittier stuff. You gotta go places where people get heated, they get aggressive, bars, crowded concerts, really anywhere there’s a density of people. Because people like to have their own space and when that space is challenged that’s where the situations tend to pop up. Also, anywhere with alcohol, concert, bars. Right? When you go to these places, when you observe these situations, don’t just sit in the corner, be a little more active, walk around. Listen to people’s language, listen for loud language, aggressive language, learn to feel the energy of the room. As you develop the skill, you’ll be able to predict just based on people that enter the room, who the problems could be. There are times and someone walks into a room and hairs upon the back of my neck and I learned to trust that instinct and it doesn’t mean that I walk away, I don’t leave the party or leave the bar whatever it is but I make sure pay attention to that person. I make sure that I’m not right near them because it doesn’t mean that they are the problem but they may initiate the problem, the problem may follow them. We’ve all known people like this people to get into trouble all the time there’s something about them, even if they’re nice people. Some folks just have this way about them. There are also other people who can bring the energy up in a room, in a good way, they can kinda pacify everyone. Those are folks you want to stick around in public places, the problems don’t follow them. If you want to develop this skill. You have to practice and you have to practice a lot because fortunately these situations don’t pop up all the time every day. Now, there are things that you can do that will help you get the most out of this time that you spend observing or maybe even identify the best places to observe. If you have friends that work at bars or are bouncers and nightclubs, talk to them, pick their brain. There are a number of books out there that you can read some from guests on the show, I’m not gonna mention any, but there’s a lot of information out there that’ll help you build the mental knowledge to predict where you can go to observe and predict. As we get better at this, we can start to discern what situations are going to be mild and what are going to be major and when you see those major situations developing, you can remove yourself before your affected. This happens in my I was a daily life because I don’t tend to get into those spots too much, I’m not a barfly, don’t go to nightclubs, but sometimes I’ll be somewhere something starts happening and my best friends know, hey if I say we gotta go, we got ago because it’s a skill that they’ve learned to trust in me. People know to give me the side of the booth that looks out over the majority of the restaurant, it’s a responsibility as you develop this skill to share it and I don’t mean share it as in teach others, I mean share it as in take ownership of it. Use that skill to protect people. If you’re out with others that you care about, I’m sorry if you have the ability, you should be using it, you should be watching what’s going on so you can be protective of those around you. We live in a strange time, the best thing you can do to protect yourself and those you care about is develop this observational and predictive skill. Sure, you could sit at home, never leave the house and you’d be safe but it would be a poor life. If you want to live your life, but do it in a safe manner this is important.
This isn’t something I’ve ever taught before, so the wheels are turning in my head. This topic inspiration came up from a recent conversation with a guest that will be out on the show in a few weeks. I’m not telling you who. But It got my wheels turning because this is something that I’ve done and have done consciously but I don’t believe that something I’ve spoken about on the show and I don’t think it’s something I’ve ever taught when I travel around and teach. But there’s something here and I’m to work on it and maybe this will turn into a video or a seminar, I don’t know, I don’t know what’s gonna happen with it. But if you’re interested in learning more or you have feedback, how do you do this? As you can tell there are some half-formed thoughts here and I want to hear from you. You can email me firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll see what we can do. One of my mottos, we’ll close up with this, one of my mottos; you will never be perfectly prepared for situation. You can be underprepared, you can be over prepared and I am always going to choose being over prepared. That’s it.
Thanks for listening you check out the show notes at whistlekick martial arts radio.com all the other episodes. You know, we give away all of our episodes for free, not every podcast does that. Some will make you by an app or something else to get back content. Well, 247 episodes available for free I don’t even know how many days that would take you to listen quite a few days. Two months? Two solid months? I don’t know, I might not be doing the math right, least amount of solid listening. Like I said if you have feedback you can email me, you can hit us up on social media @whistlekick, Facebook, twitter and Instagram are our primaries. You can sign up for the newsletter whistlekick martial arts radio.com and you should. You could leave us a review, whatever you want to do to help, share the episode with others. Thanks for listening today, I’m rambling. I’ll stop it. I hope you got something at today’s episode and I really do want to hear what you think. Until next time, train hard, smile and have a great day.