My mother is a former elementary school teacher. I have seen for many years how much this job is a mission that gives -and also takes so much, almost draining the physical and mental energies of those who dedicate themselves to it with passion.
I was frightened by the disproportion between what my professors gave and what they received in return. For such reason, since I was a boy, I had categorically excluded becoming a teacher. In effect, life led me cyclically to teach one in various fields, from universities to companies.
For it works like this: the more you try to push something away, the more it knocks insistently on your door. So I discovered that, apart from the effort of teaching, I have always received much more than I thought I was giving. Teaching means having a teaching method that works at its best and therefore, it means that whoever teaches must be aware of what he/she says, how he/she says it and who is the audience.
This continuous pendulum, this putting oneself in the perspective of those who should learn and, at the same time, in the perspective of an individual that is in charge to ensure a proper transmission in the most transparent way, is an incredible stimulus for personal growth. In short, it is the most effective way to be a student.
The same happens with the Aikido groups we are responsible for with Sara. Children strip your masks and force you to make an extreme synthesis, to weigh every single word you say, and above all to be what you say.
This also works with adults, in different ways. In adults’ class the disparity of conditions that exists between an adult and a child evaporates. There we are all more or less immersed in the same routines: from work to family, from relationships to aspirations and hopes.
And it is there that “senpainess” often reverses: people who bite the bullet and testify that they are there, always. People who have the courage to face their limits and to look together for a way to overcome them. People who trust you and therefore forgive your limits because they know that it is the only way to overcome them together.
In short, who learns from whom? The answer is everyone, and it’s one of the values that make our discipline a powerful tool for personal change and building strong relationships.
Putting ourselves in a condition that allows activating a physical, relational, and verbal dialogue with everyone… What is more necessary for a peaceful and truly rich life?
Happy Easter! Andrea and Sara