There was a gentleman walking along the road. He came upon three brick masons who were building something. He walked up to the first brick mason and said, “What are you building?” The mason responded by saying “Oh, I’m laying some bricks.” He then walked up to the second brick mason and asked him the same question. The mason said, “Oh, I’m building this wall, here.” He then went up to the third one and said, “What are you doing?” The third brick mason paused and with great pride said, “I’m building a cathedral!”
As we think about teaching martial arts, be sure you ask yourself, “What are YOU doing?” As this story illustrates, your mission and purpose can be as big or as small as you define for yourself. Are you just teaching kicks and punches? Are you teaching only physical Martial Arts and self-defense? Or are you helping develop tomorrow’s leaders?
We as martial arts instructors are in a position to positively or negatively impact our students every time they come to class. This is not something to take lightly, as even a small interaction can have lasting ripples beyond anything we might expect.
What is your interaction with your students like? Is it positive, is it negative, or is it just OK? Make the choice to bring your full spirit to every class you teach and leave a positive impact on every student who walks through your door – every day.
Do this, and you’re going to have a major impact upon your students and community for years to come. Think about when your students are 80 years old; what kind of memories will they have of you? If your mission has been to develop the leaders of tomorrow and you’ve invested yourself into your students, they will think back fondly as they remember the instructor who helped to shape the person they became.
As you teach your martial arts class today, ask yourself again, “What are you doing?”