Demanding Sensei

“Sensei seems to be in a constant state of perpetual dissatisfaction wish us because none of us live up to his standards.”

Is this person speaking about your Sensei or mine? The truth is probably both. I could easily say the same thing about Sensei Marlon. Sensei is never satisfied with me no matter how hard I try or how much progress I make. Sensei creates a sense of tremendous discomfort in me at times. But I know Karate training is not suppose to be a cake walk and that is has to be uncomfortable sometimes if I am going to grow at all. I just always keep in mind that it’s a technical dissatisfaction, not a personal dissatisfaction. You have to be careful that you don’t confuse the two.

One of the first things you need to know about a demanding Sensei is that he generally is demanding of everyone, not just you. It’s not personal. Students have a tendency to assume that he is just picking on them and they feel pressured. But let me ask you a question. Has it ever occurred to you that the most demanding instructors are the ones who push you out of your comfort zone and help you rise to a new level of competence? It is frequently the demanding instructor who will bring you the best in you. It is important and necessary to be open to what they have to teach you without taking their behavior personally.