Reaching your full potential

Balrog

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It has been mentioned on this forum that a person can reach their full potential in their style and that they will never reach certain levels no matter how much they put into it. Once they get to a certain level they hit a permanent plateau. Im not so sure about that.
I don't agree with it, either. All we can do on a daily basis is try to do it better than we did it last time. There is no goal to be achieved, just steady (and sometimes slow) improvement.

As someone smarter than I am once said, it's not reaching the destination that defines you, it's the journey you took to get there. Or something like that.
 
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PhotonGuy

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As someone smarter than I am once said, it's not reaching the destination that defines you, it's the journey you took to get there. Or something like that.

Sure enough, but the journey never really does end. When you reach a destination you just go on to reach more destinations. So in that way, at least the big journey never ends. Little journeys end whenever you reach a destination but the big journey keeps on going.
 

KenpoMaster805

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I don't agree with it either its up to the Person if they slack but for me once i reach my destination I will not stop and i will strive more to reach the highest destination
 

Tez3

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Well for sure you aren't going to be carrying on as you are when dead! Even zombies have to change. :)
 

mograph

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When you find yourself running through a meadow, surrounded by rainbows and butterflies, you have been dead a half hour. ;)

"If you find yourself alone, riding in the green fields with the sun on your face, do not be troubled. For you are in Elysium, and youre already dead!" - Maximus

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themodernfighter

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My personal opinion on this subject is that you can NEVER stop learning, you can only keep improving. When it comes to martial arts, there are a plethora of things you can improve in and it is impossible to learn everything in one lifetime. If you feel like you are in a plateauing, all you have to do is find something you are not particularly good at. So for example, if you are good at the punching range but weak when it comes to the kicking range, start focusing more on the kicking range.

There are many things you can do to keep on improving. One thing I would like to include here is solo training. It is the best thing you can do for yourself to keep on improving. I wrote a detailed article on solo training which you can find here.

Enjoy and please tell me what you think! :)
 
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PhotonGuy

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I don't agree with it either its up to the Person if they slack but for me once i reach my destination I will not stop and i will strive more to reach the highest destination

That's a good principal to live by. Anyway part of what got me to start this thread was sometime back on this forum it was mentioned that a student might never reach a particular belt level because they just aren't good enough and never will be good enough no matter how much they put into it. With this thread I am not particularly talking about belt level. What I am talking about might or might not apply to belt level depending on what kind of belt system your school might use, or if they use any system at all but most importantly what I am talking about is skill level. The idea that a student might reach a certain skill level and never get better no matter what. That they have reached their full potential and that they're reached their limit and that's that.
 

Tez3

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That they have reached their full potential and that they're reached their limit and that's that.

If reaching one belt was the sole sum of their ambition and drive then that is sad, one's potential is far wider than just aiming for one martial arts belt. You try to earn it, you don't because you aren't good enough, move on, life is full of potential!
 

drop bear

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That's a good principal to live by. Anyway part of what got me to start this thread was sometime back on this forum it was mentioned that a student might never reach a particular belt level because they just aren't good enough and never will be good enough no matter how much they put into it. With this thread I am not particularly talking about belt level. What I am talking about might or might not apply to belt level depending on what kind of belt system your school might use, or if they use any system at all but most importantly what I am talking about is skill level. The idea that a student might reach a certain skill level and never get better no matter what. That they have reached their full potential and that they're reached their limit and that's that.

Yeah sort of. In competition you can look at it two ways.

Did you win?

Are you a better person from having done the fight?

One you may not have reached your potential and the other you have.
 

Tames D

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Losing and failure are a part of self development because that means you are being challenged, overcoming challenge is what causes growth. Loss shoul be expected and not break anyone's character. The only time it should be a massive concern is if the person is always losing.
Well said Ironbear.
 
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PhotonGuy

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If reaching one belt was the sole sum of their ambition and drive then that is sad, one's potential is far wider than just aiming for one martial arts belt. You try to earn it, you don't because you aren't good enough, move on, life is full of potential!

Well at least for me as a student I am not going to stop pushing to improve myself after earning a belt, even if it is the highest belt, highest degree, ect. You can always get better and that's the point. I personally do not believe a student might reach a certain level of skill where they can't improve any more and where they will never be good enough to reach higher levels of skill.
 

Tez3

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Well at least for me as a student I am not going to stop pushing to improve myself after earning a belt, even if it is the highest belt, highest degree, ect. You can always get better and that's the point. I personally do not believe a student might reach a certain level of skill where they can't improve any more and where they will never be good enough to reach higher levels of skill.

What I am saying if getting a belt is your sole aim in life then that's sad.
 

mograph

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I believe that we can plateau, but also believe that plateaus can be overcome by breakthroughs, which can occur:
  • non-deliberately, through repeated practice (e.g. the breakthroughs that occur when doing Zhan Zhuang)
  • deliberately, through paradigm shifts (e.g. choosing to punch "soft," rather than "hard")
I think that we underestimate the likelihood of the first breakthrough, and underestimate our own capacity for patience in that regard. I also believe that we create our own barriers (consciously or not) to the second breakthrough, due to our own fears and biases. We all have them.

From a psych standpoint, we might want to look at our personality traits, expressed in the "big five" model:
  • openness (to new experiences)
  • conscientiousness
  • extraversion/introversion
  • agreeableness
  • neuroticism
The two breakthroughs I mentioned should (repsectively) map onto:
  • conscientiousness (e.g. the desire to engage in practice without immediate reward)
  • openness (the ability to adopt new paradigms)
Big Five personality traits - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

But does each of us have an ultimate limit? I can only think of physical limits, or psychological limits such as memory or processing speed.
However, I do believe that aging (physical) limits aside, most of us have not reached our potential.
 
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PhotonGuy

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Well the main reason I started this thread is because of what Chris Parker said some time back that you can reach a certain level and never get beyond it. That you've got a full potential that is innate and once you reach that full potential you will never get any better no matter how hard you work or what you do. Im not sure I agree with that.
 

drop bear

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Well the main reason I started this thread is because of what Chris Parker said some time back that you can reach a certain level and never get beyond it. That you've got a full potential that is innate and once you reach that full potential you will never get any better no matter how hard you work or what you do. Im not sure I agree with that.

There will always be people who inspire you to be mediocre. you are who you associate with.
 

frank raud

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Well the main reason I started this thread is because of what Chris Parker said some time back that you can reach a certain level and never get beyond it. That you've got a full potential that is innate and once you reach that full potential you will never get any better no matter how hard you work or what you do. Im not sure I agree with that.
Peter principle - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 
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