What I have learned in the process of testing for junior black belt

When I started the process of testing for junior black belt I had a very clear goal in mind. I wanted to complete my test. I had a single-minded focus and was determined that I would do just that. At that point in time, junior black belt meant a lot to me because it was a high rank. For me I kept getting frustrated because I wasn't quite ready for the rank of junior black belt. And to be completely honest I didn't much care about getting the techniques right I just wanted to test as soon as possible. But over time I started to learn that it didn't much matter what rank I was, it matters what I learned. If a guy with a knife corners me in an alley he's not going to care if I'm a red belt or a black belt, and it is not as if I can tell him "Oh I understand how to defend myself in theory" and expect that, that is going to do me much good either. What it comes down to really is what I learn and if I can practically apply that. So through the process of testing I learned that sometimes progress can be hard to quantify and because of that things can get very frustrating. But if you're lucky enough to get good teachers (just as I got) use a growth mindset you can achieve almost anything. Learning is not just knowing something in theory but being able to apply it in real life. True knowledge and understanding doesn't come easily, it comes from hard work and practice and training. Anyone can loosely understand how to do a technique but as you get higher in rank you're expected to have truly learned it. To be able to apply it teach and it to others and learn through experience. To use dedication as well as knowledge so you can absolutely understand and use it in all circumstances. Knowledge as well as hard work is more powerful than any technique. Learning is the key that can help you overcome any difficulty. So that is what I learned from testing at this dojo. Going forward I'm going to try to focus more on truly understanding stuff then meaningless achievements. I am going to try to gain as much knowledge as I can. I am going to try my very best to apply what I know and prove to myself I am learning.

GR - 14 year old student