The role of an Instructor – Humbleness… (Part III)
Do you wish to rise? Begin by descending. You plan a tower that will pierce the clouds? Lay first the foundation of humility.
To be Humble as an instructor is for me at least a very important part. Although to be humble does not mean that you sell yourself short in any way. Being Humble can be about being honest about what you teach or do not teach. For an example if you teach an art that is not really self-defense, you should be honest to your students, and not just because it’s martial arts it’s good for self-preservation. This has something to say with the Instructors understanding about the art and their own abilities. It’s important to say that is not something bad if your art is not for self-preservation, different people attract to different stuff. What is important that the students understand what is and what is not self-preservation training.
Being humble can also be the way you represent yourself, some instructors want their students to look at them and see them like a god or superhero/star. An instructor should be able to admit that he does not know everything because they can’t, they can seem to know a lot, but they can’t know everything. It is not something wrong with not knowing everything, they are only humans aswell. So for students aswell it is important that they don’t treat their instructors like they are superheros. Often times, when instructors have the attitude that they are a god, superhero/star there is much ego involved, which makes it a bit hard for them to handle if they get hit by a lower ranked student or a student period. So when they get hit by a student there egos get a hit, and what can happen is that the Instructor hits backs twice as fast and hard, so the Instructor escalate the situation by doing this, and in the end someone will get hurt.
It is important, for me anyway, that even I as an Instructor can fail and there is nothing wrong with that.I We all will fail at some point in life, the important thing is how do we handle failure?
Do we grind our teeth and say not again and then stand up and move on, or do we quit and say never again?
It’s important if you do not know the answers to a question, that you’ll try to find the answers, even if it takes time. For instructors that is up and coming it is important to understand knowledge comes with asking the right questions, because we can’t always have the right answers. Suro Emanuel Hart always use to say ”No questions, no answers”. Sometimes it’s hard to come up with questions and it’s even harder to come up with the right questions, but try…
For me, I’d never come up with any question at all on the spot, I need to think and think and think before I wanna ask questions. But when I do get a question I am not afraid of asking anyone who I think may have the answer.
Another thing that is important to me is that as an Instructor I am humble to other martial arts, even if I don’t agree with some of their training or philosophies. I would never openly criticize an art or system in front of my students to sell me self as the better option for an example. This is to me disrespectful and says a lot of how you are as a person. I believe that all systems and arts can offer some good ideas and I would not like to close any doors to any art. But of course, I would lie if I said that I don’t have a preference, for those who don’t know, it’s Filipino Martial Arts (FMA).
I had a real hard time writing this post, I thought I’d know what to write, but things has been very hectic due to work and that has made it hard for me to concentrate on the material I wanted to put in this post. So sorry for keeping you waiting on this one… I hope you’ll find it interesting, please make a comment and give me some feedback.
Gumagalang Ng Lubos / With Great Respect