No, I’m not suggesting that we embrace violence to solve our problems. The message we can take from Lee and all great martial artists is this:
If you want to be more effective, do less.
The prevailing quality in the movement of gifted martial artists is efficiency.
And who couldn’t use some of that?
No Nun chucks Required.
You don’t have to enter a dojo to learn the lessons.
Be Your Own Sensei:
When you become an objective self-observer you’ll notice how you waste mental and physical energy on futile efforts like worry, resentment, and anger. Just sitting at your computer, you may notice a clenched jaw, shallow breathing, hunched back, and strained eyes.
Noticing the wasteful habits is challenging since they are so deeply ingrained in our bodies and thoughts. Unwinding the habits will take attention and practice.
Find a Sensei:
To shed the waste more efficiently, get a partner. Great teachers come in many forms including coaches, trainers, body workers, and cognitive therapists. A couple of years ago, I found the Feldenkrais method to help me relieve pain. Every week my practitioner Sonja Sutherland, also an Aikido black-belt, helps me re-educate my nervous system with what seem like simple, inconsequential, movement instructions. As I try to execute her instructions, the A-student inside me struggles to move as far as I can, putting lots of effort in. Her constant reminder is “do less.” The new movement only works if I do it without any struggle. When I insert struggle, I short-circuit the goal.
Do Less, Be More:
What if we went through our days without the wasted effort? If we moved between meetings, task, and errands without wasting energy on worry, resentment, tension, or comparison? What if we were more focused on the task or person in front of us, instead of lamenting about the past or worrying about the future? What could we achieve by bringing more being to our doing?
It seems a worthy quest.
Moshe Feldenkrais on his goal with the method
“To make the impossible possible, the possible easy, and the easy, elegant.”
“If struggling were the way to get there, we’d all be there by now.”
Victoria Castle The Trance of Scarcity