Rage against the cucumber

Last week one of my training partners told me that he could tell I was not in touch with my aggression. He said I was using my energy to hold back when I should be using it to attack. As some of you may have picked up from reading this blog (or from knowing me), I like to analyze everything. This was no different.

I mentioned what he said to a non-bjj friend of mine (I actually have some of those) and she told me that was somewhat expected as women are not really socialized to be aggressive. I thought this had merit but I wanted to dig deeper and think about why I was behaving this way. Right now I am only worried about fixing myself, I’ll work on society later.

I used to have a really bad temper. A really bad temper. I would scream, kick things, punch walls, tear apart rooms and so on. One time I got so mad at my sister that I almost banged her head into the floor.* This incident changed my life because it made me realize my temper was out of control and I took measures to fix it. When I tell this story to people nowadays most of them respond with disbelief that I could have ever had a bad temper. I am cool as a cucumber.

But I don’t want to be a cucumber in BJJ! I need to be aggressive and work my game instead of settling into other people’s games. This is hard for me. I get really worried about making my partners uncomfortable when I get aggressive. I worry about hurting them physically, I worry about making them feel bad if I submit them, I worry they won’t want to roll with me anymore. The problem is that I am not worrying about me and my game when I do this.

I am trying to change my thinking about this. We are all actively engaged in a combat sport right? I know that there is always risks when I roll and I need to accept that my partners know this as well. I am not going to actively try to hurt anyone but it’s time to take my game to the next level and this means I have to stop holding back my aggression. It’s time to unleash the beast.


*I promise that I did not physically harm her and in my defense she was really aggravating as a child

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7 responses to “Rage against the cucumber”

  1. dianadoesfood says :

    AMEN!!!!! I found myself doing the same thing, being to nice and worrying about to much!!! and you know what it will feel really good to break that pattern!! because it has no use for us! I loved reading this because i feel I am fighting the same battle in all aspects of life.

    Keep writing I love it!!! xooxoxox
    tonight in BJJ we will choke eachother and not worry about anything!

  2. dianadoesfood says :

    Reblogged this on dianadoesfood and commented:
    This is something that I think all women go through because we are creatures of feeling, and feelings. Something we get in our own way!
    Great blog read it

  3. Bryan says :

    Nice job….no other words would suffice.

  4. slideyfoot says :

    Interesting: I actively avoid being aggressive, in everything I do. I really, really dislike aggressive people and aggression in general. Probably another reason I don’t compete.

    Not sure if this would be of any use to you, but there were a bunch of articles on the topic a couple of years ago, by Ashley, Leslie, Megan, Georgette and Zen Mojo. I wrote something myself, here, but then I’m not a competitor so probably not too relevant.

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