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Living Up To One's Potential

Today I was speaking to a senior Karate instructor and the subject turned to a particular student who had tremendous potential. For whatever reasons, this student did not progress very far and had not lived up to his potential. The instructor looked very sad when he discussed this subject.

It is sad when a student, who has potential, does not invest the time and effort necessary to realize that potential, or never receives the instruction necessary to enable him to realize that potential.

But we are all students. Have we lived up to our own potentials? It is one thing to think about other people. But what about ourselves?

Each day I have to ask myself, have I lived up to my potential? Or have I fallen short? What can I do to improve myself both in a technical sense and as a teacher?

Are there students in my dojo who I have not properly taught? Are some of them not living up to their potentials because I have not given them the necessary tools to do so?

When I see a student with a problem, I try to relate it to myself. As I have stated often, my students' errors are mine. Their accomplishments are their own.


Charles C. Goodin