There’s an old saying I made up last week –
“A little bit of excess in moderation does you good!”
Obsession is good. Too much is good. Pushing your edge until you’re over is…IS GOOD!
I’m blogging from aikido (martial arts) summer camp. Most of me hurts and this is what I do for fun. I’m currently gearing up for a sponsored “3000 ukemi challenge”. Ukemi are the athletic part of aikido and involves lots fo rolls, flips and falls some your partner can practice the aikido technique. 30 is enough to exhaust most fit people, so 3000 is kinda…excessive. The video below of some of my teachers will give you an idea:
The Japanese who invented aikido have an excessive culture, not in the sense of consumption, but in the sense of practice dedication and pushing the limits of the humanly possible. See for example The Marathon Monks. Having had ten years of aikido training (this makes me a serious beginner in aikido terms) when I started my training business the sense I had was that it was a little…unfair…on everyone else. Obsessive and dedicated practice builds a personal capacity that in a business environment is crucial. This isn’t a macho thing and it applies to the musician who practices scales 3 hours a day, the artist who spends five years painting straight lines or the businessman who calls every NHS trust and Council in the SE of England during a recession…just making that last one up 🙂
I claim that this “warrior” capacity to push through difficulty, walk the edge and push the limits is essential for business and for life. My friend and partner to one one of my associates Tamara LaPorte has just had a given birth – congrats 🙂 this female embodiment of warrior spirit is who we all enter the world. Mr Gladwell’s latest book states that “loves comes first” and that’s what makes us do something excessively and get good at it.
Of course moderation, the middle way and healthy balance are all important too, so in the spirit of Walt Whitman (“big enough to contain contradictions”) I’ll post on that in due course. Now back to practice!
Excess So What: If you love it, do it a lot!