“I know you can do better! Get up and try again!” – Ryu
Fighting games are tough. They can leave your ego battered and bruised from devastating losses. At the same time, you can level up and overcome obstacles to reach new heights to win. It is much like the struggles we all face in life. To illustrate this connection, we’ve created the “Adapt!” series where we break down life lessons we can learn from fighting games and vice versa.
Today, we’ll go over how making a simple decision can drastically improve your results in the game and in life.
Raise Your Standards
The concept of raising your standard is essentially a decision. It is the decision to not accept certain behaviors, circumstances, and situations you run into and set a standard that becomes your new norm. Whatever standards that you’ve set for anything in your life, you will definitely gravitate toward that standard. In other words, if you set a low standard, you’ll get low results close to the standard and conversely if you set high standards, your performance will go up to try and meet this high standard.
This dynamic of choosing our standards opens up a dilemma for us. Do we choose a low standard and breeze right through it? Or do we choose a higher standard and risk failure? Most people tend to set low standards because it sucks to experience failure. The primal part of our brain tends to tell us, “Why choose something that is out of reach and end up disappointed? You might as well choose something easy and do better than you thought you would.”
But is this what you want in your life?
You’ll have to make a choice and decide if the pain of risking failure is greater than the pain of not improving.
Adapt It to the Game
The choice between lower or higher standards can easily be applied to any fighting game. You can single out any aspect of your game and choose a standard for it. For example, we’ll work on anti-airs.
At a subconscious level, you may think, “I suck at anti-airing, so it’s ok if people jump in on me sometimes. I get a good amount of anti-airs.” You’ll be prone to accepting the low standard that you’ve set for yourself. This is a dangerous train of thought because it validates your reasons to not practice or improve. The truth is that not being able to anti-air consistently, especially in Street Fighter, is a crippling weakness if you want to be competitive. So if you keep this mentality, your win ratio will suffer as other players improve while you stay the same.
Raise the standard and say, “I won’t let anyone ever jump in on me.” This might be an extreme take and it probably won’t come true overnight, but it is guaranteed to help improve the rate at which you anti-air. The goal is crystal clear and you won’t want to drop below the new standard you’ve set. If you aren’t seeing improvement, then you’ll be more motivated to practice or figure things out until you meet your new standard.
You don’t have to go from 0 to 100 like in the last example. You can take the concept in incremental levels and say, “I won’t ever go 0-2 in tournament again.” You can keep improving your tournament score and continue to watch that win count start to rise up.
Adapt It to Life
Making the choice for a higher standard absolutely applies to anything in your life. You can set a standard for your health and stick to a level of fitness that you’ve set. You can set a standard for your financial situation and find an avenue to work toward that goal. You can choose standards for your relationships and learn how to make them better. Setting these standards are powerful ways to change your life. If you set new standards and you see improvement, it is extremely fulfilling and you’ll want more.
There will always be the risk of not meeting your standards, so there will definitely be failure along the path. But accepting that pain and seeing progress in yourself is totally worth the hardship that it entails. So I urge you to set new standards for yourself, because you can reach them.
Another concept that is critically tied to this is to Morph Your Limiting Beliefs.
This article was inspired by ideas from Tony Robbins’ book Awaken the Giant Within. Support us by grabbing a copy by clicking on the book below.