Hidden Benefit of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu: Struggling, and Overcoming

BJJ classes are absolutely full of benefits of all kinds, for people of all ages and backgrounds. Although we have written about this before, we’ll continue to do so because there are just so many different kinds of benefits. Some are physical, some emotional, some mental, and some interpersonal.

One great example of the emotional/mental benefits of BJJ classes and training is the ability to struggle with a difficult problem, stick with that struggle, and eventually overcome it.

I can tell you without question that learning Brazilian jiu jitsu is the hardest thing I have ever tried to do. At times, my experience on the mat is nothing short of joyful, but at other times it feels like an endless struggle. Of course, it cannot be endless. There is an end to all problems, if we can just stick with it and work it out.

That message is not so common these days – we’re much more focused on quick fixes and slick solutions. “Work smarter, not harder” is a common saying, as are “think outside the box”, and “get creative”. But the reality is that sometimes in life, the only solution is hard work, spread over a long time. And I can tell you with 100% certainty that Brazilian jiu jitsu is one of those things. It is hard because it is complex and, for most people, a completely new realm of experience. Hard work is the only way to get better. There are no “outside the box” solutions.

The good news is that the feeling of success and accomplishment you get from a lengthy struggle is truly fantastic. In BJJ, it often happens that you’ll struggle for days, weeks, or even months with a specific move. You’ll fail at it over and over and over, all the while getting frustrated and angry.

Then one day, you stop failing at it. You’ll walk into the gym and start perfectly executing that move against all opponents. The feeling that comes from that is simply magical, and it doesn’t happen nearly often enough in life. The experience of struggling and then succeeding on the mat translates to the rest of your life. Every time you struggle and then succeed, you get better at it. You become more skilled with struggles, more confident, and you can take on bigger and bigger challenges.

This may be one of BJJ biggest benefits – learning to work hard and succeed at difficult projects. Imagine what it could do for you?

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