“At black belt is where you truly begin to learn Jiu-Jitsu” -common saying in the Jiu-jitsu community

One of the most interesting insights along my path has been the introduction of the Pareto principle. For those who are unaware, the idea is that 20% of your input is responsible for 80% of your output. In Jiu-Jitsu language, this can be translated as 80% of what you do on the mats is the product of 20% of all of your knowledge. In other words, because our brains can only handle so much information while executing orders, we take the best of what we know and apply it picking from the other 80% as we see fit. Thus, in order to maximize your effectiveness, you should concentrate on the 20% that gives you the 80% yield.

I had never thought about this concept before. I started to apply it to my Jiu-Jitsu and started to really become a lot more effective. I met with a lot of critics about how I was turning myself off to the great big world of Jiu-Jitsu. I didn’t agree. I am open to learning and pride myself in taking in as much information as I can. I learn a little about every position and I do my best to put myself in every uncomfortable and unknown situation as possible. Where I apply the principle is by taking what is useful from each circumstance and temporarily discarding what does not work for me. Keeping what works for me easily accessible in my brain has helped me learn and execute so much more effectively.

My goal is to master my craft as it is uniquely mine.

I am just a purple belt. Maybe when I am a black belt, I will truly begin to learn.

“Adapt what is useful. Discard what is useless. Add what is uniquely your own” -Bruce Lee

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