I always assume my accomplishments mean nothing to the new people I meet and work with. It’s silly to assume they care; especially if you are seeking them out. Part of the white belt mentality is to serve the one you hope will serve you with their knowledge. You don't do this by filling their time with what’s in your head. Be the most open sponge you can be. Filter the things they teach you internally not externally. Expect their way to contradict what you know. The goal is not to have your current knowledge validated, it’s to break down old perceptions and build new wisdom. Do as you’re told. Do exactly as you’re told without variation or adjustment. Do it their way until you’re wise enough and experienced enough to do it your way. Be happy and ready to fail. Expect to take it on the chin and do this with a passionate mentality. Joyfully leap toward the sword, the opportunity to learn and embrace what happens in order to grow. Your teacher's opinion is all that matters. Until your teacher is of the opinion that you have an opinion, you don't have an opinion. Empty your cup! It may sound unorthodox to put yourself completely out of the way like this but it is the way to learn and advance quickly. After a time you will have enough of a grasp in what your teacher has shown you to test it. "Does it work" is the only valuable criteria. Nothing else matters at the most fundamental level. If it works and you can prove this to yourself, you have found a very valuable tool for improving your life. Your teacher teaches for his or her own reasons. They were teaching before you were their student. This means you have nothing to do with what they know and what they are teaching. You are not a part of their equation until you can see what they have to offer without yourself in the mix. They have already seen the value in what they are teaching. They have seen this before you. By earning the same vision your teacher already has, you and your teacher's mutual respect for what you are learning will help you both grow. First, find a good teacher. Then get out of the way. The above are a few keys for rapid advancement in whatever you study or seek to achieve. We are lucky to have people who will show us the way. We owe it to ourselves to be the best possible student we can be. -Caleb Spears, Instructor
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