It usually takes time for beginners to learn to use their body as a single unit. If, for example, someone is on top of you and you want to unseat them, you’ll often try to push with one arm, then the other, then maybe both. Then, perhaps you’ll bridge, before going back to using your arms. As you progress in skill, you learn to use your whole body simultaneously, as a single unit.
Though it may sound simplistic, united we are strong. Without this principle, you will never be able to meet your potential.
For entrepreneurs, this applies in two ways: to your team and to you as leader.
If you have a team, do they work as one or fight amongst themselves? Do you have tools in place to enable them to work together? And what can you do to take their coordination and cooperation to the next level? (If you haven’t considered corporate jiu-jitsu, nothing brings a team closer. Google, Electronic Arts and many others have in-house programs – should you?). But more deeply, is your purpose compelling enough to get them to put aside any differences or band together in challenging times? According to both The Art of War and renown author and speaker Simon Sinek, purpose trumps everything else when talking about uniting a group.
Unity applies not just to teams, but to each of us individually. As an entrepreneur, you are a leader. As a leader, you have to be on your own side.
There have been times in all of our lives when our “self-talk” has been toxic. Our thoughts can work against us. In jiu-jitsu you are forced to confront this voice every day and develop tools for “turning the negative critic into the positive coach,” as Dan Mac writes in Mind Gym: An Athlete’s Guide to Inner Excellence, a book that has had a massive impact on me – on and off the mats.
Are you “united”? Sports psychology says the middle-of-the-road fighter who believes in themself is just as, if not more dangerous than the highly skilled fighter who doubts themself. Are you good at staying on your own side or are you overly self-critical? Do your daily routines strengthen or weaken you? What can you do to make both your habits and self-talk more empowering?