Are you interested or committed to your martial art? There’s a big difference.
"When you're interested in something,
you will do it when it's convenient.
When you're committed to something,
you will do it no matter what."
Those who are interested will practice their martial art when it’s convenient for them. If something more interesting is going on or they don’t feel like going to class that day, they don’t show up. They may even schedule appointments or other events at the same time as class. They often miss more classes then they attend in a month. They soon start to slip further and further behind in their training and will most-likely never achieve a 1st dan black belt or higher.
Those who are committed to their art have a different attitude. They schedule class times and practice times on their calendar and see those time slots as non-negotiable. That’s THEIR time. No one else can take that time from them. They organize their life and schedules to be there, even if they aren’t 100% motivated that day, they know that showing up always makes them feel better. They know that being great at something is never convenient. It takes the three D’s… dedication, determination, discipline and desire. They don’t make excuses. They embody their craft. They make it known to their friends and family that their practice time is a core value that makes up who they are as a person. They don’t do it for the rank or the recognition, they do it because they ARE a martial artist, not someone who occasionally does a martial art.
Are their times in which someone who is committed to their art misses a class or personal practice?
Yes, but it’s rare.
They might miss if they are extremely ill or have a major event (wedding, graduation, funeral, school/work function, religious event or the occasional vacation.) In some cases, work/school schedules might interfere with class times and the committed student might seek private lessons or contact their Sensei with questions on how best to practice on their own until their schedule changes.
Making a commitment to something requires making sacrifices in your life that most people won’t do or understand. Commitment means living a life that most people will never achieve.
"It's one thing to have
a black belt in karate.
It's another thing
to BE one."
*You can change the word “martial art” for anything you value and commit to in your life. Nourishing a great marriage, being a wonderful parent, having a healthy and fit body, building a successful business or achieving greatness in a field of study all take a level of great commitment.
When you step into our karate dojo, you may think you are merely learning the art of self defense.
However, once you are actively involved as a student, you’ll will find that karate is really a leadership academy.
The skills taught are things like...
One leadership quality that has been proven to be more important to success in life over intelligence or any other quality is Time Management.
In life, each of us are given the same number of hours per day. No one gets more than 24 hours in a day. The most successful people in the world that are masters at their craft, were never granted more than 24 hours per day to accomplish their tasks.
What sets those who succeed in life apart from others is their ability to manage time.
Whenever I hear someone say they don't have time for Karate I am disappointed.
It tells me that the person is failing to manage their time and their life. They have not made their health or their dream of achieving a black belt in karate a priority.
Here’s why saying “I don’t have time” is a poor excuse.
Karate classes only run 60 minutes. You are to attend twice a week.
There are 168 hours in a week. If you are at karate 3 hours per week (including drive time) that’s a mere 1.8% of your week.
That’s a small spec in your time schedule!
If you are not making classes it is because you are letting other people and other things manage your time. If you want to succeed in anything of importance in life you have to block out the time on your calendar and make it non-negotiable. Instead of allowing other things to steal your time, make a commitment to yourself that those class times are sacred. No one can take them from you. It’s YOUR time.
Schedule your karate classes into your week. Time management is part of learning to be successful.
Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.
~ Earl Nightingale
Vashon Borich-Leach, Sensei teaches traditional karate and tai chi in Branson, Missouri. She considers herself a life-time student of the arts. Her blog is an open journal of lessons learned in the martial arts. If you are a martial artist and would like to contribute to her blog please contact her.
©2012 Branson Karate & Kobudo™