This week I have been putting pressure on one of my students. He is one of the youngest in my school and has been milking this fact to no end. He has also been blessed with intelligence and the ability to manipulate others with a puppy face. He seems to have a great time at the school but has shown no interest in moving forward in the ranks so I have been harder on him with the “rewards” so he shapes up and moves forward.
Last night, after class, he came back with his mother to pick up his cousins. As the only child at that time he was the center of attention and once again he took advantage of that. I let him have center stage as it was the end of the day and we were done with class. After a little while they all left and seconds later he came back running, gave me a hug and ran out again. I admit that this simple gesture melted me and proved to me once again that discipline is not a bad thing as long as you sincerely show that you care.
My point to you is that while many people ask me why is it that I teach martial arts, as I could make a lot more money doing something else, the answer to me is simple. I teach martial arts because our society at large needs a safe place where they can be themselves. A place where the meaning of family and neighborhood is presented in a positive environment as everyone attending is polite and courteous with each other. A place where we can share knowledge and use peer pressure to help each other grow. A place where the purity of love is welcome and shared among each other. A place that as one of my students call: “my happy place”.
So for the rest of my life I will treasure that spontaneous show of affection and gratitude of my students, my kids, as there is nothing greater in life than to give our time to create a better world.