Truly, if there is a martial art and Olympic sport that is not much advertised, it is Judo; yet Judo is in my opinion the most powerful tool that will change your business and your life forever(if understood, and mastered properly).
The wisdom of this martial art or sport is so untapped that I feel the need to share its benefit to the general public.
Being a judoka (judo practitioner) for over 27 years now, has had so much profound positive impact in both my professional and personal areas that me sharing the benefits of its power here is just like paying it back just a penny on a dollar.
As an Elite Athlete for over 12 years , if there’s something that I understood was result and performance under stressful timeline and conditions
Even further advantage taught by Judo are the principles the martial art has been created on.
The essence and meaning of Judo is “Gentle Way”.
In 1882, Dr. Jigoro Kano (The Father of Judo) made a comprehensive study of the ancient self-defence forms and integrated the best of these forms into a sport which is known as Kodokan Judo.
The categorization of Kodokan Judo was completed about 1887. The Kodokan had three broad aims: physical education, contest proficiency and mental training
The term Kodokan breaks down into ko (lecture, study, method), do (way or path), and kan (hall or place). Thus it means “a place to study the way”. Similarly judo breaks down into ju (gentle) and do (way or path) or “the gentle way”.
The genius of Dr.Jigoro Kano is that he traveled the world and “democratized” the martial art in many countries. Which allow people to adopt the martial art and add their own perspectives to it.
In fact if you heard about Now popularized Brazilian Jujitsu, it got it roots with the Gracie family who was taught by a Judo master Mitsuyi Maeda).
Enough of history, How does this apply to business or life?
It’s very simple- Judo stands for “Minimum Effort/ Maximum Efficiency”- Minimum Effort/ Maximum Yield or ROI.
Jigoro Kano as teacher was a small and tiny man who was obsessed with simplification, efficiency, and results. Judo is all about using, converting your opponent energy.
Before we got to the 3 major principles that I’ m sharing below, I have to say, the number one thing that attracted me to the martial art is the principle of mutual welfare.
Each Judoka, before to go on the mat, bow not only to the mat(the room and space), but also the fellow practitioners and teacher. That symbolism of bowing is a recognition and acknowledgment of the person in front of you-It’s a sign of mutual respect. It’s honoring their presence. In a way it’s like saying “I see you”.
I have heard similar concept in Yoga or Indian tradition- “Namaste”.
That humility but profound awareness if understood is powerful because whether in business or in our lives we’ve got to connect, deal with and, relate to people. That recognition is just a way to ignite our compassion. Which can be translated in terms of customer care. Put into these terms- Businesses all around the world exist because they resolve people/organizations problems for profits, period; nothing less nothing more.
Having that compassion toward other can only be a competitive advantage regardless of your beliefs.
So it’s important to understand that anything after this foundation context is in this environment of mutual welfare and true prosperity thinking. Based on the fact that If I grow, we’ll all grow together, or universal golden rule-do unto others what you would want them do unto you.
Three Principles-BBL or Break Fall- Balance & Leverage.
First Break Fall-How to fall, how to absorb a shock? How to protect your head and your brain from throw and falls.
It doesn’t matter how much you fall all that matters is how many time you stand up.
In fact real elite athlete, across almost all sport will tell you that the margin of winning is accomplished on the edge of recovery time. It’s all about recovery time. How fast can you recover from a blow? Physically, mentally and emotionally?
It’s not a matter of how much failures you’ve gotten but instead how much failures you’ve risen from.
I didn’t understand when I first started the martial art. My teacher who was a true master made me spend over two months just learning about break fall; learning how to fall.
In fact there are so many style of falls that it became fun for me, to practice falls with obstacles, so on and so forth. I remember in the beginning being frustrated, as I wanted to learn the techniques right away looking at students that started before me. In the end learning this fundamental only led me to mastery. Why?
Because as I learned to fall (even eyes closed) and therefore mastered to stand up after the fall gives the student the absolute confidence to go all in, in most of the situation knowing that you’ll be able to recover and keep on no matter what.
In fact, I had noticed that judokas, that didn’t spend much time in mastering this skill, had the most injuries on the mat, therefore shorter athletic successes lifespan, which led to less confidence on the mat in the long term. It is subtle but critical.
Well In business, no need to emphasize that there’s competition. How fast do we recover from competitive products assault on the market place?
Or do we keep whining and trying to figure out what happened and move on quickly?
It’s all about recovery time.
How quickly do you recover emotionally, physically and mentally?
In Athletic, that’s the ultimate answer at the high level.
It’s not a matter of how much competition exist coming your way or not (if you don’t have competition yet, it’s a matter of time or it means you are not playing yet a bigger game).
The best people that recover have learned to reengage quickly- They have learned how to break fall in life and in business.
The how is another long subject that we can discuss at a later time.
To keep it succinct we’ll review the next 2 principles next time. But before I’ll would like to share a quick story from a great movie. Batman Begins.
Batman Begins is a 2005 superhero film based on the fictional DC Comics character Batman, co-written and directed by Christopher Nolan and starring Christian Bale.
In that movie there’s a powerful line in there, which had so much impact on me.
It’s basically the foundation of how batman became batman.
The young “batman” who was 7-8 years old of age, fell down in an old well full of bats; from that event which was a significantly emotionally event for the young batman. After that fall he asked the servant “Why do we have to fall?”
The answer from the servant was this “The reason we fall is that so we can stand up again…”
I thought it was powerful line.
In fact looking at my two toddler when they were learning to walk, after each try, they didn’t get mad and say, I’ll never walk again. They stood up again and again after each fall till they started walking (all the falls they had didn’t matter anymore).
I could go further on this topic but I hope my point is well illustrated here. Learn how to break fall, because it’s all about recovery time; how fast do you stand up again after a fall.
On this first principle, which is necessary for any long term success.
Now your turn to think about and apply this principle.
Is there something in your life, in your business that had impacted you negatively /positively and that you have NOT recovered from it yet?
What could you do to recover faster?