“Be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are of your own.” -Carlos Gracie
Without going into too much detail, I’ll just say that not everyone who my husband trains with was happy about his recent unexpected promotion in Daitoryu Aikijujitsu. Apparently the person in question felt as though the two of them were in competition, or that it somehow wasn’t fair, but Joe usually trains at least four times more often than that person, and his promotion was well-deserved, regardless.
I’ve basically experienced the opposite thing in my own martial arts training, there have been people who’ve attended class less than I did, but they still kept promoting right alongside me, or sometimes even over me. I may have trained more, but they were still better, and I certainly didn’t get mad about their success. Comparing myself to others usually just makes me feel like I suck, so I try not to do it, or else I probably would’ve already quit (like the person who was mentioned above).
The fact is, someone else’s journey is really none of my business. I can’t say it’s easy on the ego to watch people surpass me, but in reality, the only progress I need to focus on is my own, because my path is about improving myself, not being better than anyone else. Since I don’t train with my sights set on stripes and belts, I get all the validation I need from simply seeing how far I’ve come, and growth in martial arts is different for everyone, so who am I to judge the progress of others? If my teachers believe that someone deserves promotion, then I’m happy for them.
I don’t worry about how fast other people move forward, I just worry about continually moving myself forward, and if you do the same, then your journey should be a success. Don’t compare yourself to anyone, just do you.
“Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.” -Dr. Seuss