When we are in practice it is often measured by the success we count in the performance of drills. In the most part those drills are not the same as the work we will do outside of this practice and much of the value is lost with this state of mind. Being good at a drill means knowing it from every angle, being comfortable with it to the point you can do it effortlessly and with repeating success. Do you measure your happiness in life in how you prepare for them or in how you live them fully ? When the drill becomes familiar and the work becomes about getting it right the actual learning is over and the art takes over the martial.
We practice to find ourselves within and that is the larger goal of the work and not doing the work well. I am never going to be good at one specific drill but I am learning with each different practice to simply be myself. To accept that self learning and not momentary success will grant me a happy life and to release that which I hold as a crutch before me. The success of the moment that has just past.
Through acceptance we become truly free and from that comes our joy in life. Do not seek success but to keep moving. That is life.

I do sound like a fortune cookie. You are not imagining it 🙂

One free hand

We are tool using people. There are no teeth or claws worth mentioning in regard to the animal kingdom and sometimes we need to remember this.
Hold a water bottle on your body using pressure from any limb and keep one arm free at all times. Move the bottle on your body using one or more limbs again with one arm free and repeat the drill while sitting and while moving between sitting and standing.
Have a partner try to take the bottle away and you avoiding it with your body and limb movements all while keeping one free hand.

The more we spread our awareness and common sense the better can we serve our families and friends and brothers in arms. For a soldier or policeman in a house search this can be the difference between life and death. For a father taking care of an infant it can be avoiding injury in his son and so on. The practice must be flexible to match the endless possibilities of what is happening now.