3 tips by Pedro Valente for defeating the enemy within

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Pedro Valente and his students at Valente Brothers.

The BJJ philosophy goes far beyond finishing moves and points scored in tournaments. One example of this fact was provided by Pedro Valente, a GM partner, in a TEDx Talk in Santo Domingo last month. The black-belt spoke about the “enemy within” and how the teachings of our martial art can help anyone — even people who have never donned a gi.

Before that, he spoke about the origins of the gentle art, about how current methods have been making the essence of BJJ get lost over the years, and also about how BJJ can help anybody overcome their fears and challenges.

To Pedro, three basic concepts can be used by anyone, whether a BJJ student or not, and these may be the door to a better life.

Focus
Start by focusing on your breathing. Understand how air enters and leaves your body. Focus on your senses. See more, feel more, smell more, taste more. Focus more on the little things. Do everything with total attention. I guarantee you will do better. You will avoid dangers more and will appreciate the small, beautiful things in life.

Acceptance
Acceptance is about the relationship with things as they are, in this moment. Through acceptance you will separate yourself from your inner enemy. With acceptance you will be able to see life as a whole, and have reasons to be grateful. Gratitude is one of the most powerful healing powers out there. Be grateful for life, for the abundance of air around you. By following this line of reasoning, you will find many other reasons to be grateful.

Transformation
Transforming negative things into positive things. Transforming your perspectives. Transforming the enemy within into the friend within. Think of the ocean with a strong current. The world’s greatest swimmer, trying to beat it, will fail. Now if he changes directions and look for another way out, he will turn the unstoppable force into momentum in his favor.

Watch, below, Pedro Valente’s full explanation about the enemy within and how to beat them.

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