- Had a tough day at work?
- Got too much on your mind?
- Feeling kind of tired and down?
- Too tired?
- Too many things to do?
As soon as you decide to do that, your day will change. By the time you have packed your gi and are on your way to the dojo, your own personal ritual for transformation has begun. The drive to the dojo, for instance, can be used to process the day and let it go.
With each step, let your problems drop away. Each door you close behind you separates you from the difficulties of the day. Changing from your street clothes to your gi is a particularly effective tool. Shed your troubles with your clothes and step into a 'fresh new you' when you put on your gi. By the time you reach the mat, whether you are aware of it or not, the transformation is well advanced.
Before embarking on the practice of Aikido you should be committed to training at least two or three times per week. An Aikido person cannot properly learn the art without consistent and diligent practise. It will not be easy! There will be times when you will not want to train: you must be able to stand behind your commitment.
To attain that condition of being in which philosophy, technique, attitude and spirit merge requires consistent, sincere practice.There are no shortcuts. When there is no longer a distinction between daily life and the practice of Aikido we truly will be following the 'Way of Harmony'.
An Aikido young boy travelled across Japan to the school of a great swordsman. When he arrived at the school he was given an audience with the founder, who was impressed that this young boy made such a long journey.
"What do you wish from me?" the master asked.
"I wish to be your student and become the finest swordsman in the land," the boy replied.
"How long must I study?"
"Ten years at least," the master answered. "Ten years is a long time.
What if I studied twice as hard as all your other students?"
"Twenty years," replied the master.
"Twenty! What if I practice relentlessly, day and night, with all my effort.?"
"Thirty years," replied the master.
"How is it that each time I say I will work harder you tell me that it will take longer?" the student asked, quite confused by now.
"The answer is clear," said the master. 'When there is one eye fixed upon your destination, there is only one eye left with which to find the Way.'
You need to commit to training 2-3 times per week to attain that condition of being in which philosophy, technique, attitude and spirit merge. When there is no longer a distinction between daily life and the practice of Aikido we truly will be following the 'Way of Harmony'.
Aikido is a highly refined martial art, developed this century as a means of self-defense and spiritual training. The art of Aikido develops coordination of mind and body. Through its philosophy and techniques, Aikido brings us into harmony with our environment, other people and ourselves.
Unlike many martial arts, Aikido requires no particular advantage in strength or speed, and is practiced successfully by people of all ages and abilities. Aikido practice develops flexibility, co-ordination, concentration, improved health and fitness, effective communication skills and self-esteem.
The physical aspects of Aikido, as graceful and dynamic as they can be, are only the outward manifestation of what is most importantly a real and direct way to improve the quality of our lives.
Mastery of Aikido is a journey, not a destination.
These qualities are universally admired, and serve as reminders of the ultimate purpose of Ki training: the development and growth of ourselves as human beings.
- Develop a universal mind.
- Love and protect all you meet.
- Show gratitude for all you have.
- Do good in secret without expecting reward.
- Have soft eyes and a composed manner.
- Be large-hearted and forgiving.
- Think deeply and see clearly.
- Maintain a spirit of unshakable composure.
- Be vigorous and full of energy.
- Persevere as long as you live.
When you see a person who has a proper attitude it tells you that their energy is positive. Positive attitude produces enthusiasm which in turn generates energy. Positive-thinking people accomplish more life goals because they expect positive results. Belief creates the actuality. You create your own reality.
Another way attitude plays a big part in your life is how you handle problems. Everyone has problems, but with a good attitude problems become challenges. Accept problems and use them to make you stronger. When you experience a setback, say to yourself, "That's not like me, I'll do better next time."
It's never too late to change your attitude. When you give up and stop caring, you lose the harmonious balance of mind and body; you begin to work against your own best interests.
One way you can change your attitude is a adopt a spirit of thankfulness. Many people think only of what they want or don't have. Instead, focus on what you do have. Be thankful for your food, clothing, shelter and for the people who appreciate and love you.
Treasure your time. Most people live their lives as if they have all the time in the world. Think about how much time is wasted on projects which are not of value to you or society. You must realise that what you do affects the universe as a whole.
Begin and end the day being grateful for the opportunities you are given to learn. Think of each day as if it were your last. Remind yourself of this constantly, and you will realise that some things are not so important anymore.