Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Potential – every ones secret identity……….

In the past I have been fortunate to witness things that I consider to be quite amazing.  Along with two partners I am the host of the largest tournament circuit in all of N.Y. State.  It is called NY Tournaments.com.  Even though I am honored and I think that it is ultimately cool, it’s not what I do, but what I am able to observe, that makes my life so special.  Within this tournament competitors from as young as 4 year olds on up to 65 compete.  I get to sit at the head table and observe the entire event and see the magic happen.  

That is not really what I am so excited about.  There are large amounts of competitors that are at the top of their game, amazingly talented individuals who have worked super hard to get there.  About two days before the tournament I ran, one of the competitors whom I know, emailed me, asking if they could get their money back.  The young man had explained to me, how a few days prior he just tested for his 3rd degree black belt and how his body was extremely sore. He went on to explain how he had been so focused on this test that he hadn’t prepared for this event.  Being that he is not my direct student, but a student of one of my best friends, I thought I better be careful how I handle this.  I told this young man he should do it and that there were no refunds. The young man humbly accepted the fact that their where no refunds and said, “I will just go and help others.” 

I replied and said, No!  You need to compete.  He explained to me again, how he wasn’t ready and didn’t want to do it.  I replied with a tough luck, you’re doing it attitude. I explained how I thought no matter how he did, it didn’t matter. Whether he won or lost, was not the lesson, it was how he went out there and did it. He accepted and competed that day.  This young man was unsure, but I pushed him to compete.  This young man ended up winning the Black Belt division in Self Defense, as well as going on to win Grand Champion for his entire Youth Black Belt in that category.  He, his teacher, his parents and other fellow students where proud of him and he was proud of himself, thanking me for pushing him.  

At times no matter what the craft, Acting, Martial Arts, Dance, Sports, Work or just everyday life, we all have to realize there is unlimited and untapped potential within all of us.  At times human natures leads us astray and tells us to settle, or believe we are not capable, but we have to defend ourselves from the very thought that leads us down this path.  Because mediocrity, is about denying what is possible giving you a false reality and belief on what you are actually capable of.  You have to believe you can do it and believe within all of us lies a Super Hero of sorts.  

“A lot of young actors have the idea that, “I’ve got to do this right.  There’s a right way to do this.”  But there’s no right or wrong. There’s only good and bad.  And “bad” usually happens when you’re trying too hard to do it right. There’s a very broad spectrum of things that can inhibit you. The most important thing for actors – and not just actors, but everybody – is to feel loose enough to create what you want to create, and be free to try anything. To have choices!” 
– Robert DeNiro

I see the potential in people, when they do not see it in themselves.  I sometimes have to push people to the point, where they feel uncomfortable, when they do not really like me. I have a parent in my school with a young daughter.  I see unbelievable potential in her and I tell him this.  He agrees with me, like any proud dad would, yet fights me on many counts to push his daughter.  He tells me “I chose my battles and this isn’t one of them.”  At times it is hard to push a young child, when the parent is totally resistant.  Sadly, I can’t force people to be amazing.  However, I know if they just let me guide them they will reach heights unimaginable.   No matter what you do, remember, you have unlimited potential and you can do anything you chose.  Push yourself or find someone you trust to help you push the envelope with in you.  Discover the Ninja in You!

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