Building walls vs building bridges …
It’s easy to build walls. Any average, unskilled person can build a wall. All that is required is stacking objects on top of each other, in a row, as high as desired. The objects could be anything — stones, bricks, chain links, Rubix cubes — anything. Simply start stacking and voila — a wall. Very simple.
Bridges, on the other hand, are not easy. They require specific, high-level skill sets — geometry, physics, design, geology, construction, and more. They require planning, scouting, favorable conditions, and strong collaboration. The slightest miscalculation can lead to failure — injury…death. Unlike building walls, building bridges is hard.
Walls are segregating structures. They are built to keep people or things apart. And they are easy to build. As it turns out, segregation…is easy.
Fear, ignorance, hate — these are the things from which walls are built. All easy emotional states. This is why wall-building institutions such as religion — or political parties — proliferate so easily. Believers vs Sinners. Us vs Them. This is easy stuff to grasp. Easy walls to build.
The people that build walls will tell you that walls offer security. That they protect you from the ‘bad things’ on the outside.
But the funny thing about walls is that they do just as good a job at keeping things out as they do at keeping things in. The price wall-builders pay for security from the outside is freedom for themselves. In order to remain safe from the outside, you must stay on the inside. Entrapped by fear disguised as security.
Bridges, on the other hand, are connective structures. They bring people or things together. They unite. But unlike segregation, connection…is hard.
And just as fear is the bedrock on which walls are built, it takes courage to build a bridge. The courage to face the unknown and potential differences. Courage to bypass the easy road to segregation and forge a path to connection.
Yes, walls are easy to build. But the payoff is enclosure. With each wall goes more freedom.
Bridges may be very hard to build, but they payoff is opportunity. Because connections represent opportunity. The opportunity to connect, cross pollinate perspectives, merge contexts. Bridges build openness and transparency. And this is the fertile ground upon which progress is grown.
Almost nothing good has ever come from separation. But almost everything good has come from connection.
I don’t know what 2021 has in store for us and I don’t have a solution for the pandemic but I do know I’m tired of the whole thing – like most of you! Now that the holidays are over and we have three months of a hard Toronto winter ahead of us, how are we going to make it to spring?
FightClub 2021 New Year Challenge
I know many of you would love to be training in the martial arts aspects of Systema like punches, kicks, wrestling, knife fighting and breath work. However we need to use our Systema training to fight other things now like stress, fear, anxiety, boredom, the list goes on and on.
Over the next three months, I will be showing you how to use your Systema training in a way that will help you not only be in awesome physical health but to fortify strong mental health to boot.
The course has been set, Destination Spring! Here we come …
Train every week with Systema FightClub Live Online or OnDemand Classes and Listen to my weekly podcast. Training and Listening are powerful tools in the learning process and I can support your development much better if I know you’re following along in this capacity. Now that we have the baseline requirements laid out, let’s add a few do’s and don’t for this month …
Walk outdoors every day for 15 mins
Read a book every day for 15 mins
Exercise every day for 15 mins
Be glued to your television, cell phone and other electronic devices
Watch the News – Read about it instead
Spend all day on social media
Every month I will be adding a few more do’s and don’t to this list. We don’t want to shock the body and mind, we want to help it adapt and grow so that by the time Spring rolls around we look and feel our best!
Please share this with your friends and family members or anyone you feel can benefit from what I am doing. There are a lot of people suffering out there unnecessarily and it’s a shame when I have a plan available and I know the ways to help them. All anyone needs to do is be committed, train consistently and stay focused to reap all the rewards that Systema training has to offer and what I have to teach them.
Communication is always happening and most of what is communicated isn’t even in the words that we are telling ourselves or others. Likely you have heard the phrase “Only 10% of our communication is verbal. The other 90% happens to be non-verbal.” There is a lot going on there that we might not know about!
Everything we do sends a message. Our actions are a form of comunication to everyone that are around us. Ask yourself a simple question …
“What message(s) are you sending?”
Listen to emmanuel talking about this simple question in more detail.