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Goals of daily training, an Aiki perspective

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Goals of daily training, an Aiki perspective

Postby Francis Takahashi » Wed Sep 17, 2014 9:52 am

I was once asked to differentiate between goals and priorities. In recalling a perspective given by a Doctor of Psychology, I was reminded that they appear to be similar, yet can be different in so many ways.

A goal is defined by having four qualities. 1) It must be something a person truly wants, not something wanted for someone else, and not something another person wants for that person. 2) It must be time specific, having a definite “due by” date, and not open ended or nebulous. 3) It must be something attainable, not some dream or wish to be fulfilled by Providence or the Tooth Fairy. 4) It must be written down, and easily referred to at need.

A priority may be best described by a comparative narrative of both goals and priorities being defined at the beginning of the day, and at the very end. Goals are those definite want to accomplish things that begins the day. Priorities are those things actually chosen throughout the day, and clearly what the person actually wanted to attain or accomplish at the end of the day.

When we set goals of training, we must be realistic and cognizant of how priorities may take the place of desired goals throughout the day, week or month. Instead of being dismayed at the results, we should rejoice in honestly discovering our inner most desires and needs, in spite of not having accomplished what we set out to do. Self honesty is a rare and vital commodity, and we must cherish our willingness to consistently be up front and fair with our inner selves. Only then can substantive changes in our behavior be instituted over time, without unnecessary stress or disappointment. Fundamental kindness begins with ourselves, thus finding it easier to be kind to others. In business, it is advised to “pay yourself first”, ensuring that you will wake up able to continue the very next day.

Perhaps we can divide daily goals into three categories. 1) Physical training and skills development 2) Mental exercises that stimulate the subconscious mind to co-ordinate better with the active mind to better understand concepts and theories. 3) Spiritual reflections on what the soul requires in justifying energy invested, and that certain emotional issues are properly addressed and rectified. Each person will probably have different rationale regarding these categories, perhaps on a daily basis.

I believe that conditioning and skills development must be given top priority by the student, as scheduling such activities presents the most challenges to the student on a daily basis. It may be far easier to address mental exercises, reading, video reviews etc. as a filler between assignments of daily living requirements. So too can spiritual or emotional issues be scheduled around time intensive needs of physical training. The earlier in the day to begin your daily scheduling should bring about optimum results. Be sure to stay hydrated, well fed, and well rested throughout the daily regimen chosen and followed. Be sure then to review results, and make any necessary adjustments to your scheduling and follow through.

While highly desirable for obvious reasons, it may not always be feasible to train in a traditional dojo environment as often as one would like. Feel free to improvise, scheduling walks, hikes, gym workouts and including periodic impromptu workouts with weapons in front of a full size mirror whenever time and circumstances permit.

Your results will be in direct proportion to the amount of enjoyment you derive from being innovative and creative in your daily routines. Laugh often, and take joyful interaction with whatever environment you find yourself privileged to be in.
Francis Takahashi
Posts: 411
Joined: Fri Nov 06, 2009 5:51 pm

Re: Goals of daily training, an Aiki perspective

Postby Carina Rei » Thu Sep 18, 2014 7:16 am

Again a very thoughts provoking article, thank you very much for it Takahashi Shihan.

My goals are still maintain my health so that I will be able to continue my training, although I'm not training in a dojo just now. My priorities of course are my family and my job and must find time, while attending both, for my goals, no problem, my food tastes are about healthy. I hope that in october will begin another course of Tai Chi, I'm invited to a seminar given by an Aikido teacher who comes from our neighbour island Lanzarote and I also scheduled to walk every morning before going to my office. As soon as the weather in our island gets fresher and it begins to rain, we will hike on sundays in the mountain again, to breath and do good physical exercise in the clear fresh air below the pine trees.
Meanwhile I'm enjoying the late summer bathing in the ocean in a clean clear water.
Carina Rei
Posts: 461
Joined: Fri Jul 15, 2011 12:50 am
Location: Gran Canaria - Spain

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