We’re all are familiar with the notion of not allowing disempowering emotions to interfere with our actions when it comes to self defense. However have you ever thought about how your emotions as an instructor might affect your students and their ability to perform?
An instructor I know gets extremely irritated when his students can’t do what he asks. Although he doesn’t lash out, yell and scream at his class, you can see his frustration in his facial expressions and sometimes in the way he talks to his students.
I’m first to admit there are times when I catch myself heading down the same path. At that point I try to do a U-turn and put on a “happy face”. I try to find something good in what my student might be doing even if they’re so far off the mark it’s not funny.
From there, together we build on making good the next thing, one step at a time. Not worrying too much about getting it *all* correct right then. If the student fixes just *one* thing and starts heading in the right direction, it’s a victory for you both.
To paraphrase a comment someone said to me once, “Don’t worry about closing the ashtray and locking the doors when the wheels are falling off the car”.
Next time you look at a student who can’t do what you’re asking, try not to get frustrated and reinforce that they’re doing it wrong. This destroys their self esteem.
Instead look for something good and let them know to give them some confidence. Then choose one small thing to fix. Once they’ve got that down, move to the next.
Before you know it your student will be making advances in leaps and bounds. A little confidence goes a long way.