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A long time ago, I worked at a grocery store. I remember coming up to a friend of mine and complaining that I got an 89.3 in my Social Psychology class. He looked at me straight-faced as I went on and on and on about how my professor should have given me the .7 I needed for an A in the class. When he broke his silence, he maintained his cold look and asked “Do you deserve an A?”

Of course this led me onto another tirade.

I continued rambling and complaining about my professor. I believed in my heart that I deserved an A in that class. When he asked “Why”? I said that I had done all of the extra credit assignments, had near-perfect attendance in class, was very participatory and did everything I could to warrant an extra .7 points.

“So, after all that, you still got an 89.3”?

“Yes”.

“But yet, you still think you deserve an A when you clearly fell .7 points short?”

“Yes!”

“Listen… What makes you think you are entitled to anything in this life? Nobody owes you a single thing and if you go on through life thinking that people owe you something just because you do this or that then you will be miserable. Suck it up, acknowledge and accept the fact that you came up short and you don’t deserve anything more or less than an 89.3. Nobody owes you $H!T.”

I looked at him mouth wide in utter shock at what I just heard.

He was right.

“You are not entitled to the fruits of your labor, just the labor itself” -Bhagavad Gita

I take this mentality with me with almost everything I do… almost to a fault. I firmly believe that nobody owes me anything and I work my ass off and accept what I get.

In Jiu-Jitsu it’s the same. You get what you deserve… never more, never less. You reap the work that you put in, not the reward. Your work on the mats is your reward. Not the medals, not the slap on the rear, not the “great job” from your training partners and coaches. You are not entitled to any of that. it is all a byproduct of the work you put in and the work you love.

Nobody owes you anything but maybe you owe it to yourself to love the work that you do and never sell yourself short.

 

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