Complacency setting in
“Complacency is a continuous struggle that we all have to fight.” –Jack Nicklaus
It has been about a year since I started Rock Steady Boxing (RSB) classes. It has been a great journey filled with many triumphs, and yes, a few meltdowns. I had started to become complacent and overconfident in my abilities. I experienced this complacency in the past, when I used to dance. Whenever I took a dance class from a different instructor, I sometimes struggled with their style of choreography. My body was so used to working with my previous teacher week after week. Their dance moves came to me so naturally. Just because I studied dance for many years did not imply that I would quickly learn new and different ways to use my body. I had become complacent.
Recently, I took an RSB class that reminded me of my dancing days’ complacency. It was a good reminder; a lesson in humility.
A cognitive challenge
Coach Michelle, my teacher, took the week off. I wanted to continue my streak of attending class every week, so I went to another location to take a class from a different RSB teacher, Coach Seth. Coaches Michelle and Seth have unique teaching styles. The RSB organization provides a focus each week, but coaches may use different drills to support that theme. The RSB focus for the week was footwork agility.
We did a drill I had never done before, and unsurprisingly, I failed miserably. My processing speed to get my feet to quickly perform the footwork drill was definitely impaired. People in the class thought I was moving fast, but I knew my accuracy was poor. My previous dance background honed my ability to learn choreography, but Parkinson’s disease (PD) has dampened this skill. I am a perfectionist, and so I felt that I was not up to par in drill performance. My neurologist reminds me I used to go at 85 MPH and now, with PD, my speed is closer 55 MPH. Of course, this does not sit well with me. I want to be speedy with accuracy!
What lessons do I take away from this class?
That class humbled me. I should not set the bar so high with my performance. I need to be kinder to myself. I am no longer the dancer I used to be, and I must acknowledge that reality. I can’t rest on my laurels or let my guard down when battling this disease.
“We shall have no better conditions in the future if we are satisfied with all those which we have at present.” –Thomas Edison
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