I wanted to say Fear in the title but that would be too strong. Despite having trained for over 5 years in jiu-jitsu even now I am apprehensive before sparring. I am worried about many things. I don't want to look bad in front of my instructor, I want to uphold the status of my belt, I don't want to tap to lower belts, I want to show upper belts what I'm made of...these fears all boil down to fact that I worry about what others think about me. This type of behavior is non-progressive and will not improve my skill level, in fact it will hamper it. It is only lately that I have started to regain my confidence and right now I feel comfortable where I am as a purple belt but it is a constant fight with the lizard part of my brain.
I have the same feeling now I had as a blue belt when I was doing well in competition and just before I got promoted to purple belt. That's not to say that I think that I deserve to go to the next level and get promoted to brown. I want to stay purple for another 2 years if possible. Right now I am finally able to relax and accept my failings. I don't feel I have anything to prove at this point. I have decent all round jiu-jitsu right now and I enjoy each roll as it comes whether I'm the hammer or the nail.
At our club we have started a nogi sparring class for anyone interested. I'm sort of the guy in charge of it as of now since I can always make that time to get to the gym in the day and apparently you need to be purple to be in charge of the class as a rule. Doing nogi has really sharpened me up and allowed me to be more efficient during 5 minute rolls because we roll for 10 minutes during nogi. When I drop to 5 minutes it feels like nothing and so I can constantly attack without gasing out now. Life is good right now because my interest doing BJJ has gone up so much recently.