I’ve been judging for a tournament. When I decided a winner from two nearly equally matched competitors, I would start second guessing myself. It drove me insane especially when I went home after finishing.
Yesterday, I decided to not let it bother me and trust my judgement. Today, I am proud to say that I’m getting somewhere. I am starting to trust my judgement more. It’s been a gradual process, especially this week. I put a lot of thought into deciding who wins because there’s more to these events then just winning.You also gain experience and improve for the next round or tournament.
I want to encourage the younger generation to speak up and have confidence in their ability. Even if they’re not where they want to be now, they have what it takes to reach it. It may be difficult and at times discouraging, but they can reach their goals. The moments when I can encourage them and give critiques are the best. I do have a tendency to try to emphasize the strengths of the one who lost to encourage them to try again.
While there is a comparison aspect in competitions, the reason they lost is not because they’re not enough. It’s just that we are all on different paths and at different paces. Your opponent might be a bit farther than you in this area, but you have strengths unique to you. I want to bring up weaknesses that came out in the round for both sides and then encourage their strengths. Although sometimes there are bad match ups when one opponent is a lot farther ahead or the other isn’t having a good day and isn’t at the top of their game.
In that case, all I can encourage them both to do is to keep going and keep trying. As a judge, seeing competitors like this gives me more hope for the future. They’re bright and think outside of the box, each with their own strengths and weaknesses.
I wonder if this is how my coach and other teachers saw me too.
Growing up, I always felt like a disappointment because not only did I comparing myself to others, I also compared myself to an ideal image of myself, a distorted image cobbled together from various ideas. I was wrong. Those harmful comparisons and that horrible twisted ideal image hurt me more than anything else.
I never want anyone to feel the way I did. More than anything, I want to encourage others and to help them realize that when you are going through big changes in your life (like growing up), it may feel like the ground beneath your feet has disappeared, but it’s still there. The terrain may seem different, but that’s because the way you see it is different. You’re just not used to who you are right now or what you see. This is the time when you are finding more and more about yourself. During this time, fears and doubts like to creep into your mind and tell you things that will make you want to curl in on yourself and despair.
They are also bunch of filthy liars. Don’t listen to them. Don’t despair for so long that you only know the taste of salt.
Even though I wish I knew this more fully when I was younger, I don’t regret it. It was an important part of my journey. Right now, I want to move forward and enjoy the present. I want to encourage others to stand a little straighter and speak more surely. Especially the younger generation who are in most need of help and consideration. They have good ideas, but not everyone wants to hear them. It’s sad to see. Everyone deserves to be heard.
No matter how old they are or where they’re from or what they look like, I want people to find joy and the affirmation that should be given to every human being. Yes, you exist. Yes, you have worth. Yes, there ar things only you can do right now, in that moment, in that specific way.
Wouldn’t it be nice if we were all considerate and compassionate to one another? Even though it’s not possible right now, it’s something I myself will continue to strive for. This world is cruel enough. Let’s not add to it.