I had a fantastic time both on Sado and Hachijo, but I want to talk more about the interior journey I took during the trip and since then.
I arrived on Sado with all of my luggage. You know the saying, wherever you go, there you are. And that is true. I think I was the same taiko player in Sado that I have been ever since I started. I am timid, cautious, a bit fearful. I need to rehearse things over and over again till I feel any confidence, and even then I shun the spotlight. There were a lot of strong players in Kasamix and that just underscored the feelings that I had about my own worth as a taiko player. I’m not good enough. I don’t learn kuchishoga fast enough or I don’t raise my arms high enough or I don’t show enough joy or smile enough. And blah blah blah.
I have wondered if taiko might be metaphor for who we are and how we approach things. Some players show joy, can power pose and be large in all that they do…even if they are not fully on beat. Some players were not always in time with the ji but they had a sense of joy and carefreeness that they expressed. Some were serious and on beat. Some were intense, on beat, strong. And I wondered if this is who they were in other aspects of their lives? I know the way I play taiko does express part of how I approach life and how I see myself.
I would like to change that. There has been a TED talk video that has been circulating on the internet: http://blog.ted.com/2012/10/01/10-examples-of-how-power-posing-can-work-to-boost-your-confidence/
Sometimes it takes a while to process what it is that you have actually gained from a trip. I am still in that process. But what I have learned thus far is that I want to show less fear and more joy. I think I need to do that both in taiko and in life. I saw samples of these in Sado and Hachijo and I will carry these forward with me. And after listening to the TED talk on confidence, I have decided that I need to fake it till I become it. So my new ambition in taiko is to not hang in the back of the class….always my tendency…but to choose the front and to smile and to make as much noise as I can and worry less about being wrong.
Thank you Toni. Thank you Yuta and Chie. Thank you KODO. And thank you all Kasamix participants!