Two Student Personality Types For Your Life Lessons

by Keith Pascal

Wouldn’t it be great to live in the world of Tiptoeing to Tranquility where your students hang on your every word, not just for martial arts lessons, but for your everyday, life lessons?

I’m sure you have some valuable life tips. If you read the article Going Beyond Tiptoeing to Tranquility, then you are going beyond the life advice from the book.

You have more tactics and techniques for moving through life than simply teaching your charges not to be bored when washing dishes or how to change a car tire.

Wouldn’t it be great if your students soaked up all that you had to offer?

Unfortunately, in this modern age, students sometimes aren’t receptive to another story.

When presenting non-fighting, life lessons, did you know there are two distinct student personality types?

The first group of students are what I call the receptive worshippers. These pupils hang on everything you say.

You don’t have to tell them that you’re giving them a life lesson. They will try to imitate and adopt anything you say.

If you have a better way to cook eggs, they want to know. Know how to fold a shirt in an efficient, martial-arts way, and they want to be able to quickly snap their shirts into the ninja fold, too.

This is your easy audience.

On the flip side, you have a group that thinks, “Oh, no, not another preachy lesson. That’s all I need … not a story!”

You have to treat this group differently.

These are my Offer Proofs.

I either have to pique their curiosity …

Did you know that the Japanese, some say the ninjas, had a secret way of completely folding a shirt in one second flat? Talk about adding efficiency to one’s life!”

Then you wait for the response, and you admit that you know the exact method.

Finally, you allow them to “pry it out of you.”

Another tactic with this group is to offer the proof before you teach the technique….

“Have you noticed that advanced martial artists never seem to get surprised? It has to do with a scanning ability, similar to how teachers talk to other teachers while in a hall filled with kids. The scan past the person they’re talking to.”

Then you can ask them if they want to know your technique for how to do an efficient periphery scan.

Teaching to Both Types

As a former high school teacher, I actually found it easy to teach to both styles at the same time. I simply made sure to include elements that would appeal to each personality type.

The key, whether giving a life lesson to one student or to several is to keep both personality types in mind as you present.

And a clincher to add to the end of any tip or mini lesson is to relate its usefulness to the student. Show the worth to the student. Make it valuable for the student to ponder it later and incorporate it into their life.


Keith Pascal is the author of the ebook Secrets of Teaching Martial Arts More Effectively. Having earned a master’s degree that emphasized teaching methodologies, Keith has always been interested in the best ways to learn anything efficiently and effectively.

Keith also holds teacher’s certification in the martial arts. His teacher, Steve Golden, was an original Ed Parker and Bruce Lee black belt.


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