How to Think About Improving Your Position

For one month, I practiced Brazilian Jiu-jitsu. During that time, I learned a profound lesson: when you’re in a bad spot, concentrate on improving your position. If an opponent has your back in rearmount, it’s nearly impossible to choke them and win the contest. Instead, you must move to a slightly better position, like turtle or guard.

The lesson applies to business, life, money, and relationships.

You can’t go from broke to rich, fat to fit, or mailroom to boss. That’s not how life unfolds.

Think of what’s really bothering you. Now, imagine a slight improvement and squirm your way into that position because it’s the next step toward a better state. Skipping steps doesn’t usually work.

In your mind, there’s probably a vision of the future you’d like to achieve. Maybe it’s the perfect job, a better relationship, less financial strife, or a vibrant social life where you actually hang out with true friends.

Instead of imagining a future state and hoping you’ll get there, concentrate on slightly improving your position, the Brazilian Jiu-jitsu equivalent of getting from kneemount to guard.

Get comfortable knowing that all you can do is take shuffle and shift to improve your position. Then go do it. You don’t need a special guidebook that shows you all the steps. You just need to get a clear picture of what you want and stop aching for that end-state. Improve your position slightly today, incrementally next week, and a little more by the end of the year. 

Don’t backslide. Move forward.

Take one small step, every day.   

If you feel stuck, get a firm grasp on the big goal and simply think, “What can I do right now to improve my position?” 

1 comment

  • So true! It also makes me think of improving your position one small step at a time. If you are in a state of continuous improvement, the ultimate goal becomes easier. Thanks for a good read/reminder today Kippo.

    Mark Quinn

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