Now if jiu jitsu was my 'first dance' with finding an activity that sparked my passion - my approach would be a *whole* different story.
It was a whole different story in 1996 when I started playing pool. I became addicted. My life revolved around pool - I ate, slept and dreamed about pool. I constantly practiced and played in tournaments. I scoured the internet for info, i watched DVDs, I took lessons. I lived in Texas at the time and traveled the country playing in tournaments. I would play anywhere from 15 - 40 hours a week(sometimes spending 15 hours on Saturdays in the pool hall). I had a plan and was DETERMINED to become I professional pool player. In December 2000 - I qualified and played in my first (and last) WPBA pro event.
Then a break-up when my then boyfriend(the love of my life), put pool in perspective and my addiction was broken. Just like my relationship with pool was broken. I was so hard on myself. Even when I was winning tournaments I wasn't happy. I always "could've played better" "not made any mistakes"...could'a would'a should'a...
hard lessons learned...
since then - when I find something that sparks my passion (and there are so many great things out there to try) I have my experience with pool to put it in perspective.
This is my approach to jiu jitsu
- if I can't laugh at myself - then i'm taking it too seriously
- if I am not having fun - then i'm taking it too seriously
- i will focus on the basics and progress at MY pace - not at the pace of others
- i *forgive* myself for not being perfect
- i will be patient with myself
- when I am training or competing I will give it my all
- i will not beat myself up over mistakes but will learn from them
- i will listen to my body and rest when I need rest
- if life demands get in the way - I won't resent them (jiu jitsu will always be there)
- i will respect all my opponents - they are here because they love what they are doing and have put time and effort into it - How can you not respect that? (even they are acting like a$$holes - believe me - I've acted like an a$$hole before)
In 2001 I stopped competing and playing pool. I moved to Boulder, CO in early 2001 and found other passions. Motorcycle racing, rock climbing, and of course mountain biking. I laid my pool cue down and never looked back. I started dabbling in pool a couple of years ago after an 8 year hiatus. I still love the game but can take it or leave it...playing in spurts here and there. I still have a lot of my skill and it's fun to be out and whoop up on the boyz every now and I can't imagine giving up all my free time (and life) for pool.