In order to improve to our greatest capacities, we need other people.
There is a lot of work we can do on ourselves on our own.
There is a lot of self analysis, soul searching, and self improvement that can and should be done by us and us alone.
But, none of that work matters very much without the relationships that affect and are affected by our attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors.
None of that matters if we are alone.
Relationships force us to look at ourselves and our interactions with the world around us in new and important ways that we could not conceive of in a vacuum of isolation.
Relationships force us to grow, change, and evolve.
We need feedback.
We need friction.
We need reflections.
We need each other.
And, no one said it would be easy.
Holistic Budo: As it is in budo, so too it is in life. As it is in life, so too it is in budo.
Robert Van Valkenburgh is co-founder of Kogen Dojo Self Defense Academy where he teaches Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
All photos by Robert Van Valkenburgh unless otherwise noted.
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