I don’t play Magic, but my friend does; he doesn’t do jiu-jitsu, but I do (when I’m not slacking off). The other day he asked me something about BJJ class, and I started describing my playstyle (sit back, defend, and wait for an opening) vs. someone else’s playstyle (very aggressive, forward-driving, and manhandling you until you give them something). I also mentioned that my coach has been encouraging me to play more like the latter and says that I’m too passive.
My friend listened, then said that while he didn’t really follow, his best analogy to explain it to himself was like the three main types of Magic styles: aggro, midrange, and control, with my examples being the control and aggro styles.
And I had an epiphany — I don’t need to start playing “aggro” style when my coach says I’m too passive; I just need to bump it up to “midrange.” That is, it’s not a binary choice between “aggro” and “not aggro”; there are really three (maybe more) options, with an actual style in the middle of the two. I know I’ve tried to play in the middle, but I come in thinking the goal is eventually “aggro” style and that just doesn’t work for me. But if I look at it as playing a different style, neither aggro nor passive, maybe that will work better for my brain.
Right now my brain switches to a active, attacking-but-not-aggressive style I’d kinda like to keep around when I play against the better guys (the purples and browns in particular), but then goes back to a softer control style when I play against the women again. Boo, brain!
In injury news: I ripped off the entire toenail on my little toe. I didn’t even feel it; someone pointed it out after class. It doesn’t hurt, but my toe feels a little bereft. Feels weird! Right now I’m just keeping it clean and covered during the day; I skipped morning class today to give it some more initial healing time, but should be ready to jump back in by this weekend.