Roxanne Modafferi

The Happy Warrior

update: BJJ stuff, prodigy kids, fantastic training, translation, Leslie, Transformers

Posted in every day, fight on June 16th, 2017 by roxyfighter

Training has been amazing.

I feel like I’m getting burnt out again, actually. But if there’s some amazing training scheduled, I want to do it. If I can do physical training to get stronger, I want to do it. If there are kids who want private lessons to get better, I want to do it.

I also want to lay down but that’s not a priority….

I’ve been having all kinds of breakthroughs in my jiujitsu game lately, thanks to Capitão. I’m preventing people from passing more. I’ve been improving my De La Riva guard a bit, and I improved my armbars. THAT’S what I’ve been trying to focus on lately. In my last three fights, I actually finished one but the other two people defended them. Whyyyyyyyyy?!

So I went over scenarios with Capitão and figured out what I could do better and I’ve been armbarring people more in practice. Yeah!!! Rick also gave me some great tips. I’ve been using his stuff, as well.

So Capitão’s friend Diego has a brother who is friends with this black belt (are you following?) who brought a team of youths to America to compete in some tournament, and they decided to stay for a few months to train. I LOVE THEM. Two boys and three girls.

They are supposedly prodigies, and I was like “alright whatever” and then the 12 year old ended up choking me out. And I didn’t even care. Actually no, I’m a little bothered, but that’s because I haven’t figured out how he did it and I’m jealous and I wanna do it, too. So he got my back and that was fine. He got some grip and it wasn’t tight. I was defending. He made an adjustment. Another adjustment. Another adjustment. Suddenly I realized that I was in danger but he was so physically strong. At that point I knew I was screwed so I tried to notice how he was doing it so I could try and remember….. and then he shifted my body to the side and got the power of leverage, finishing the gi cross choke and I tapped before I went unconscious. THAT SHIFT. I need to be taught that better. I’m missing a detail. Gah! I must knowwww. He seeks me out to roll in practice, which is flattering.

So Capitão told me that I need to put more pressure down and move less. That’s Prodigy child’s game, too, and when we go, I’m doing well until I get tired and then he passes and everything goes downhill. haha
So the other day I decided to try and squash his game. I tried to move slower and keep pressure and not get swept, and I did WAY better. Yay learning. And he didn’t choke me again. But I was tempted to give him my back to see his work again.

Why is he so strong? THIS IS WHY HE IS SO STRONG. HOLY O@U#I$*#@$. I just saw this on instagram!!

There should be no ego at the gym, but we are only human. If you love something and love learning something, it becomes easier if you remind yourself that we are all students.

Coach John taught me two really sweet wall techniques that I’ve been using successfully! YAY Thanks, John. Best coach ever.

Leslie Smith visited Syndicate this week! I had sparred her kickboxing two years ago and she annihilated me. I noticed big improvements this time so I was happy. I would love for her to come around more, like on MMA day! We’re not in the same weight class so I don’t mind training together! 🙂 And I really like her. Yay Leslie!

We gave out stripes in the big kids jiujitsu class. Here’s a picture of Coach Rick and our students Bailee and Chris. I love them!

I also gave Griffin another stripe! He earned it. The little imp. <3

My friend Serena is fighting this weekend, so I’ve been helping her train, stay ready, and cut weight. Her mom is here, who I lovely assigned the nickname “Mamarena,” and her little, huge, brother Brandon. 🙂

I’m so excited for her fight. She’s going to win and fight well!! She has done nothing but improved and gotten stronger.

I have a translation gig translating fighter’s post fight interviews! It’s fun, good practice for me, and I get to use my Japanese skills that I learned in college! Yay using your college degree for something. Thanks, Jonathan, for helping me fulfill my dream of doing translation.

I took some pictures of myself with my four belts! Because why not. I have them so I should pose with them. I think there’s some kind of law. I was even thinking I have enough to wear only them, like hang them over my shoulder so one covers each boob, and then the one around my waist is like a miniskirt. I thought about this for about two seconds, shared the idea with Serena and Mamarena, had a mighty guffaw with them, and then went to take proper ones. ^_^

In the iota of free time I have I’ve been watching the Transformers Prime on Netflix!

I’m really really impressed with it! I mostly watch Japanese anime, not American cartoons, but I loved American Beast Wars when I was a teenager. The p;lot is decent, the music is good, the voice acting is good. I admire Optimus for always trying to do the right thing, and being a bad-a$$.

Do you know the greatest riches in the world?

Posted in every day on June 3rd, 2017 by roxyfighter

Each human being is born in the middle of a path. They travel down that path in their lives. The path splits off each time there is a decision to be made. Sometimes the “correct” path is clear (don’t steal that toy), sometimes it’s not clear. (study to become a teacher or a musician?). As I got older, I realized that there is no correct or incorrect path…..only how we feel about the outcome the path leads us to. In relationships, in job choices, choosing where to move or what house to buy, etc.

When I realized this, it took some of the pressure off some choices for me, knowing that whatever I chose, I would make it work. Because I was alive. For an actual warrior, defeat is death. Life is great. Life is amazing.

I recently found out that two of my family members on both sides of my family have serious cancer. Actually, I found out the same day.

Actually, there is a lot of cancer on both sides of my family, with almost every female on both sides of my family getting some form. So much in fact that I’m pretty convinced I’m gonna get it eventually. That sounds uncharacteristically pessimistic of me, but it brings a determined resolution: I have to live as much and as hard as I can with the time I have, because so many people don’t have time. Heck, I could be totally healthy and get hit by a car and die. We all die and don’t know when. I don’t want to know. So therefore, every day I wake up, every time I eat something delicious, every time I go out with friends, I am glad. Every time somebody cuts me of fin traffic, I’m not mad. I think, “Whoops that was dangerous. I’m glad I’m alive. I hope that guy doesn’t have an accident down the line because he’s kind of reckless.”

Every time I start my car, I’m grateful I have a car. I feel the weight of responsibility that I now control this huge piece of metal machinery. In life, safety and life are the most important things. Everything else, EVERYTHING, is secondary or trivial. Clothes, possessions, what wouldn’t you trade for health?

I don’t mind leaving the nest, but I often wish I could be closer to my family and see them more than once or twice a year.

When I imagined winning the lottery or getting rich, in the past I thought of traveling to Brazil, or Japan a FEW times a year, and maybe going to Texas De Brazil once a month. Now all I can think about is helping my family and the people I love. That’s why I want to be rich. I remember watching TUF Brazil and like half the fighters were like, “I want big UFC money so I can take care of my Mama and buy her a house.” I thought, “Aww that’s cute and kinda sappy.” Now I totally get it. I would want to keep my old Toyota, shop at Walmart, eat at Taco Bell, and help my family.

I keep thinking about my beloved family members. I’m glad I just saw them earlier this year. I wish I could do more to support them. But I have to stay focused and keep chasing my dreams. We are all on our own individual paths. Other people’s paths sometimes join with our own sometimes, or run parallel.

We can’t always save other people. They don’t always do what we advise. Other people make their own choices and have to live with the results of THEIR decisions. They chose the path to walk down, and we can’t pull them backwards, or have them skip to another path. Have you ever watched in frustration someone you cared about making a decision you thought was “wrong?”

I’m kind of feeling down at the moment. When my mind starts thinking about all that, I try and make my emotions swing upward. I’m worried about my family, but I have to be strong, be positive, be grateful, be a good role-model to my kids (kids BJJ class), and do things that will positively effect this world that we live in. I’m grateful for the body and the life I have and I will never never take it for granted.

Invicta prep! Mental challenges, my student, Rowdy Rollers BJJ, team, choked out, sponsors

Posted in dream, every day, fight, friends, fun, training on May 13th, 2017 by roxyfighter

Do you ever get that day where you’ve been working hard and one day you feel like crap and you decide to stay home and take a day off from exercising because you know you’d just have a bad performance and it’s better to rest up and be better the next day?

That’s the smart thing to do, but I never do it. I cannot rest.


I’d rather go and fail or do poorly, than not go. “You can’t ‘not even try!'” I would tell myself. Even my dad said to me one time, “Resting is difficult for Modafferis.” Everyone with my dad’s bloodline is constantly on the go. You should hear about what my Aunt Connie does daily… raised three kids while working as an elementary/middle school music teacher full-time, taught private piano lessons daily after school, taught choir after school (or what is school chorus? whichever!) and on weekends at the church AND THE SCHOOL, and SANG masses at her church…

She’s amazing. I don’t think she knows that I admire her. I love my Modafferi bloodline, but I’m also glad I have my mom’s bloodline, too. Her family is long-lived…. everyone’s lived into their 90s, and my grandfather was 102 when he passed. Maybe I’m not a vampire after all, but her blood is keeping me looking young. Or maybe she’s a vampire?!?!

But I digress.

Two Thursdays ago, I kinda lost it. I was so mentally tired. I’m not afraid to say it because most people don’t know about what a fighter goes through mentally. Taking care of yourself mentally is just as important as physically, for fighters and non-fighters alike. I found a pretty good balance in my normal life, but when I fight prep, my rest periods go towards conditioning.

I’ve been told that if a fighter doesn’t cry or have a fit at least once in their training camp, they’re not training hard enough. I’ve been doing MMA, jiujitsu, conditioning, plus teaching my kids jiujitsu and privates for weeks on end, only skipping martial arts on Sunday. But that’s my yoga day (I hate yoga so I’m still forcing myself to ‘train,’) and chore day.

Thursday I did my stairs conditioning, went into BJJ, felt unmotivated but did it anyway because BJJ is life, and then did MMA class. My mind was just so tired. I felt like the past weeks were one continuous day. I’d been sleeping but I felt like I hadn’t, you know?

I remember standing in front of my first sparring partner, Serena, raising my hands, hearing John say “Work Time!” and a little voice in my head said, “Again? I don’t want to do this right now….”

Damnit. Whenever the audible voice pops up in my head, it’s bad news. I haven’t heard myself think for ages. It’s something that shows I’m not focused, that I haven’t tapped into my subconscious instinct for feeling the fight.

We sparred and I performed like crap. In the second round, I sparred with Jessy, and performed like crap. One time she hit me and I saw flashes of white. After that round, that was it.

(Jessica happened to be taking pictures during my horrible round. ug! noooo)

I went into Casey’s office and cried on him for two rounds. -_-

It was weird because nothing was really wrong. I was so excited about everything. I was too excited. I was excited about my fight – great camp, no injuries, I’m in phenominal shape! My personal life is fine, my kids classes are spectacular, the UFC is opening 125, my future looks bright… “Why…am…I…crying?” I cried to Casey. lol My mind seemed solid, but my emotions were tired and my body was just randomly crying.

There was a disconnect there.
I’m gonna make fun of myself with a “feels” meme now.

“You know,” Casey said, “You are one of the most mentally strong people I know. It takes a lot of mental strength to do what you do.”

I keep thinking back to college, where I was SO stressed out because I had to juggle tons of classes, studying, part-time job, training, personal life, etc. I thought that was the most stressful time of my life. But I guess it’s not fair to compare stresses in different time-periods, just like it’s not fair for two people to compare their stresses. We are different people at different stages of our lives. If you’re stressed, you’re stressed. Don’t belittle it. Saying, “You shouldn’t be stressed because I just got fired and my pet died and my boyfriend left me” really doesn’t make me feel any less stressed, and in fact, makes one feel guilty.

Anyway. I felt a little better after that. Thank you, Casey, for always being there for me. He suggested I stop training for the day. (It was my third session of the day anyway) but then one of my favorite Rob Zombie song came on, and I felt the need to redeem myself. It’s never too late. One of my favorite quotes came from Ronda Rousey when she said, “Training to be a champion on your worst day.” On my honor as a martial artist, I will finish the class.

So I sparred with Mike, and I had a great match! Really great. I felt reinflated, if that makes sense. Thanks, Casey, thanks Mike, thanks Rob Zombie. Then I did the drilling cool down at the end and can say proudly that I finished class and didn’t give up.

I was kind of hiding from Coach John during class… I didn’t want him to see me cry. ._. Later when I talked to him, he said the same thing as Casey. “Fighters aren’t always going to have perfect days every day. It’s just one of those days.”

I went home and took an ice bath (gah!) and watched Transformer movies online for the rest of the day. lol Lorenzo had been telling me to take a break, but I had no time to take a break! I’ve been going non-stop….lucky I haven’t gotten sick.

Friday I had a really hard conditioning session with Lorenzo. x_x ug. I was able to push through that with no problem. Then the weekend was a little rearranged, and I was hoping that would help me mentally recover. It did!

So Saturday I coached my student Preston at his first jiujitsu tournament. There was only one other kid in his division. He used to be hesitant to do takedowns, and if he felt himself failing, he would fall on his butt (and promptly get mounted) rather than risk being thrown and slammed. So we’ve been training takedown strategy so much. I’m so proud of the fact that he went out there and bravely grabbed his opponent!

His opponent tried o-soto-gari, which is HIS favorite throw, so he pushed forward and tried for a single/ double leg takedown! I taught him to think o-soto, and if it didn’t work, immediately switch to the double-leg. Jessy’s been working a lot of wrestling with him, too. He started the takedown but they fell awkwardly and the opponent got on top and held him down with kesa-gatame, scarf hold.

Preston managed to almost get out, but then the opponent tried to mount but Preston got half guard. WEEeeee! getting half guard instead of getting mounted was something else we trained a lot!! They got restarted in the middle. I yelled to Preston to get his guard back. He got his guard back and immediately tried for the choke! He’s so good at it! His opponent spent the next minute fending off his choke.

Preston couldn’t get it and unfortunately lost on points. 🙁 The opponent was really good…really smooth. Seemed too good. I asked casually to the coach next to me, “How long has your student been training?” He said, “Oh two years.”

What? Excuse me, but usually a student training for two years doesn’t have a white belt with only one stripe on it……………………………..or compete in a white belt division… just saying……………

But that makes me even MORE proud of Preston for doing so well against an opponent with over double the experience he has.

So on Monday, I promoted Preston to gray-white belt.

The IBJJF guidelines say after 6 months the kids get a new belt, but I think that’s too soon to learn the basics. I want my gray belts to be strong and have a good base, especially if they’re gonna compete. I have a list of techniques they have to know. And Preston knows them. Preston has been training for about 7 or 8 months, and he’s learned so fast because he comes literally every day and does private lessons with me twice a week.

I’m so so proud of him!!

On Sunday, I went to Las Vegas Rowdy Rollers, an all-female open mat organized by Mylene from Chris Engle’s BJJ school.

I had such a great time!

I love Mylene! She’s so cool and skilled and nice and talented. *_* Last January? when I rolled with her, I was a purple belt and she was brown.
This time, she was black and I was brown and she STILL whooped my butt, but I felt like I didn’t get whooped quite as badly? Maybe it’s my imagination. I think I fixed some mistakes, but it’s hard for me to remember. She had given me some tips so I really wanted to show that I had improved.
Jiujitsu is fun!!

And I rolled with this lady only known as “Tammi” and when I went home and googled her, I found that she’s some BJJ world champion who beat Mackenzie Dern at one point? Holy cannoli! That’s why she wiped the floor with me. hah! Tapped me out with this nifty shoulder lock from guard.

Monday I felt back to normal!! Alexa Connors joined Syndicate and Monday was the first day we trained together! I love training with her! Thanks for the training and welcome to Syndicate!

We really have a great team of female fighters at Syndicate. Here’s another pic of another day, and Serena and Alexa aren’t even in the pic…

Also had a great mitt sessions with John this week, and shark tanks. I was on fire this week. Hard training, solid mentally. I know I’m well-prepared for my fight against Sarah D’lelio. It’s next Saturday! Broadcast on Fightpass. I leave on Wednesday.

I hope this is the official fight poster…it’s cool. My face is on it. XD

These photos taken by Jessica Bakan, our resident photographer. (She is also for hire, if anyone needs a professional photographer for profile pictures, weddings, fashion shoots, whatever. contact Bakanphotography at gmail.com )

On Monday, I was grappling with Captain. I’m pretty hard to choke, if I do say so myself. So he got me in this guillotine. I’m fighting it but it’s pretty tight. I’m still able to breathe so I’m wiggling and fighting, and I can feel him transitioning to something. I’m starting to get dizzy and fade out, so I decide to tap, but one of my arms is trapped somehow and the other one was twisted under us, so I tried to reach and tap his hands. I’m sitting at a desk in my University in Japan just finishing up a test. It was my International Persuasion class. My classmates are all around me. My friend Katie was there. Then the teacher says, “Okay everyone outside! Recess!” That’s weird, recess at this age? So I get up and file out into the grassy field and I’m chatting with people. Then the world kind of turns on it’s side and I see people grappling with each other. I’m so confused. I sit up strait and say, “Where am I? Where am I? Where am I?” like three or four times. I look around. What is going on? I see Captain staring at me and then starts to laugh. It took me about 60 seconds to realize that I got choked unconscious and that was a choke dream!! I stood up and fell back down. LOL It felt like a week had passed! I was so confused. He said he didn’t feel me tap. He said it was a head-arm triangle, realized I wasn’t moving and let me go. I don’t even remember the head arm triangle. LOL I think I went out as I was trying to tap. oops
So here’s a meme that I made earlier this year and I’ll post it in honor of this moment.

Captain’s been going out of his way to help me prepare for my fight. He planted himself next to me when we were drilling in John’s class all this week and gave me tips.

I’ve been watching My Hero Academia, a GREAT anime, and I’ll post a quote from it!

I’m very grateful to my sponsors for this fight.

Dragon Do Fight Gear, Remove it Restoration, Jenkins Jiujitsu and Aaron, Top Notch fighter and John, Nick Braccia, Fight Face Custom Mouthguards, https://combatdocket.com/and crew, Cryohelmet , Dominateyourgame.com , Katie, Howard Fidler, Aardvark Painting and Robvark, Thug Life Celia, My Consumer I.T. and the Crilly family! I can’t wait to meet you guys.

Preparing for Invicta 23, kids classes, TV, life etc

Posted in every day, fight on May 2nd, 2017 by roxyfighter

My last few blogs were actually stories. This is an update!

Things are going splendidly. I didn’t really stop training much after my previous fight, so my weight is still low and my cardio and stamina are great.

Actually I really suck at maintaining my weight. I’m either gaining or losing. I gained a pound and then went strict with my diet, and before I knew it, I was literally at fight weight and felt drained on a Monday when I should feel refreshed. SOOOOO I ate a lot of tacos for two days in a row. lol And ice cream. And now I feel better.

My next fight is May 20th in Invicta 23 in Kansas City, MO. Invicta made these cool posters! 😀

Working with Lorenzo doing physical training has been helping SO much.

I’m also so glad I added BJJ gi into my schedule on a regular basis, despite it being really physically hard to do double sessions in a row.

I feel it’s helping build and maintain my strength, and it motivates me so much for training, especially on Thursday when I have to do kickboxing right afterwards.

Captain and Casey are the best jiujitsu teachers for me!

I respect them not only because they are good teachers and kind to me, but because they are struggling with their own goals and careers. We look up to people who work hard in the face of diversity, right?
John, as well. Can you imagine not only managing a business, but a gym, which is a living, breathing organism with all kinds of personalities with all sorts of needs.

I’ve been learning new ground and pound stuff from him and little details about things I didn’t even know I didn’t know. Like, wow.
I’ve become super conscious of this nowadays because I’m in an instructor role. I’m taking time to coach my kids at tournaments.

My kids class is growing and growing and now the average is between 15 and 20 every class! Serena used to help me out once in a while, and now I’m depending on her twice a week! Monday I had TWENTY THREE kids! My new record! I’m so pleased!

And because Serena acts goofy when showing technique, the kids pay attention even better!

Nice pictures by Jessica Bakan, our resident photographer.
I love this kid Chris! He works so hard and is very talented…he tried to knee bar me the other day and I kinda adult-muscled out of it. lol
And his little sister Bailee is awesome, too! <3 I'm gonna take pictures of me raising my arms in joy and victory for the rest of my fight camp.

Lately I’ve been watching Sherlock, per Katie’s suggestion.

I’ve also been watching Fairy Tail. On ep 61 now. It’s not too deep and I’m not emotionally evolved in it…I watch it before going to bed and my brain shuts off. LOL It only takes like 2 minutes but then I go from thinking about everything to literally nodding off. Natsu is freaking cool, though. He has Luffy’s stupidity but not quite as bad, Naruto’s stubbornness, and Goku’s love of fighting. I love when he yells “Moette kita ze!” (I’m all fired up now!”) and “kakatte koi ya!” (bring it on!)

Also, I’m excited about the new Attack on Titan! I read the manga like a year ago when it came out, and the anime is almost the same. Slight changes but I like it, because it feels new. As my friend Candy put it, it feels like I’m “living it.”

I’m doing an AMA on Reddit tomorrow (Wednesday) at 6:30 PM PST on the subforum rmma. If you don’t know what that means, ignore this sentence. lol

Congrats to my high school friend Jared on his marriage, and his new wife Christina. I’m sad I didn’t make it. :/

I’ve been trying to rewatch the Transformers so I can see the newest one. I discovered iTunes rentals. The second one wasn’t as bad as the 19% Rotten Tomatoes made it out to be! Well I’ve only ever seen the first one.

I have some nice sponsors for my fight but I still have spots open on my banner and shorts for company logos, names, screen names, funnny words, whatever! lol email me to inquire: basilisk875@yahoo.com

my code of a martial artist

Posted in every day on April 27th, 2017 by roxyfighter

You have your own value system, code of honor, and rules for living.

what is right and wrong
what you should or shout not do
how to behave

The challenge is to follow these self-appointed rules when you’re tired, stressed, or emotional. If you are a human who interacts with others, you know that pressure and circumstances make people act in unpleasant ways.

Those are the times where self-discipline is needed. Those are the times that test our resolve and hearts.

Will you take an extra cookie when nobody is looking even when you’re on a diet?
Will you yell at someone you care about if you’re angry?
Will you lie about something you think doesn’t matter?

Ultimately, it’s a person’s choice what kind of person they want to be. I won’t judge other people because I haven’t walked in their shoes in life, I haven’t experienced their life experiences that made them what they are, I can’t feel the things they are feeling. That is part of my code as a martial artist.

What’s the first thing you think of when you hear the word, “Honor?”

I just googled the word “honor” and I see a lot of American soldiers, samurai, other warrior-type characters, and cell phones. (huh?)

Can you define “honor” in words? Protection, respect, fulfill an obligation. An obligation to who? To yourself and to other people.

Pride – I feel like lately, it’s getting a negative connotation, where people think too highly of themselves and are ‘prideful.’ For me, it’s not. I have pride so I won’t stop training until I fall over. My pride won’t allow me to slack off on the assault exercise bike and let the numbers fall, even when my trainer Lorenzo walks away for a second and stops watching. I hold myself to a high standard and if I break it, I will be letting myself down and it will damage my self-esteem. Pride lets me sleep at night if I fail at something, because I KNOW I gave it 100%.

Growing up being teased, I admired super heroes who did “the right thing.” They helped others, they sacrificed something to follow some moral principle. They told the truth even if it meant hurting someone’s feelings, in order to fix a situation in the long run. They followed the rules. My teachers and parents told me, “Life isn’t always fair” like a mantra over and over again. Therefore, growing up, it was very important for me to do the “right” thing because I wanted so badly for the world to be fair. The “right” thing is often the hardest thing. I feel like the world isn’t fair because people don’t try hard enough to make it fair.

But WHAT IS THE RIGHT THING?! Sometimes it’s not so easy to know! You can only do what YOU feel is right so you can live with yourself. Sometimes two choices seem right. There are two futures right there, one down path A, one down path B. We have no way of knowing which one is ‘best,’ because we can’t see the future. Just choose.

(That’s a line from Levi from Attack on Titan.)

I also feel a very strong need to accomplish attainable goals I set for myself. For example, Friday morning I have to go to yoga class, or else my back will hurt all next week and my body won’t recover. I will absolutely go to that class unless my car breaks down. No matter if I’m tired or cranky or whatever, there is no way I’m not going to that class.

The trick for me is ignoring my mood and feelings. Those can change so easily. If someone I had a crush on suddenly texted me he was going, I would suddenly be motivated 400% to go. (not true, but just for example). Objectively look at facts.

If I let my mood dictate my actions, and I skip some unpleasant work out or homework or whatever, I’m letting myself down and failing myself. That’s my pride. Otherwise, how can I call myself a martial artist?

Our emotional control and will-power is like a muscle. It needs to be exercised and developed. When I first started fighting and dieting for fights, it was so hard and tortuous to control my eating if I was hungry or craving something. So, I got the idea to train my will-power. I used to walk into bakeries, look at and smell all the delicious breads and pastries, and then walk out without buying anything. Now it doesn’t bother me one bit seeing others eat a lot in front of me if I have to have a salad or whatnot.

I’m not trying to sound high and mighty. I’m trying to explain how I build a mental and emotional structure for myself to live in and live by. I want to know my weaknesses so I can strengthen them.

I guess one of my weaknesses is that I’m not very sharp to pick up on things people might imply. But it’s partially by choice. I don’t try too hard. It’s so easy to misunderstand or misread people. My mom always said, “Don’t be a mind-reader.” So I choose not to think something that somebody doesn’t tell me directly. If I think, “Maybe they feel or think this?” I entertain the possibility, but don’t believe it unless I have proof. I wonder if that’s good or not. Well, I don’t get into trouble at all, but I’m often finding stuff out that I hadn’t picked up or realized and then I think, “Man, I’m oblivious.”

One of my most recent accomplishments was banishing my emotions from training. I used to get frustrated if I couldn’t pick up or learn a move quickly. My brain got more and more worked up until it froze and I got REALLY upset. I started telling myself, “I’m a Jedi, I’m a Jedi, there are no need for emotions here.” As I step on the mat, I bow in respect, touch the post, and imagine leaving my feelings there stuck to the post until I’m done training. If I feel something welling up during training, I imagine it like a breeze, wafting away in the air.

[edit] Another thing is that if I notice a grammatical error in my writing, I MUST go edit it because I have my pride as an English teacher! Spelling is a whole different story… lol