Black Belt Word of the Week - EFFORT
“When it comes to getting a raise, or the new position at work, do you think the boss will choose the person who puts just enough effort in or the one who takes the initiative and does more than is required of them?”
The last few months has been “very hot” as well as challenging for some of the students getting ready for black belt next month (November 27th) and my congratulations goes to those who have stayed focused because the Black Belt Word of the Week has been applied by each and every one of them.
Besides putting in the time the formula of self-confidence plus massive amounts of EFFORT are important keys to any martial accomplishment and reflects and teaches us about all of life’s activities; what you put into anything is what you get out of it. This statement is simple enough and that is why it is seldom appreciated in its depth and breadth.
When you first begin to study martial arts, time and effort usually means going to a class and physically working out. There are many people who never go beyond this aspect. For those that do, they eventually realize that all quality, long-term martial artists have one trait in common: the ability to practice on their own (self-discipline).
Effort is then tied to self-discipline and time is linked to priorities. This is where you refine your technique and begin to develop on your own martial arts balance.
At this point you discover things like the techniques and principals I like to call the "20-year lessons", so called because that’s how long you will practice before you understand them, and this is where you will either embrace these techniques with a determination to pursue them to the point of accomplishment or you drop by the wayside.
At this point you understand that the definition of effort includes taking the initiative and doing more than is required of you.
After 20 years passes, you look around and realize that in the process, martial arts have become a part of everything you do in life; the work, the play, the relationships are all influenced and approached with skills you have learned on the dojo floor.
As the years move on, you become realize that the great enemy of time and effort is arrogance. As soon as you feel like you have “arrived,” you are a "master" and know it all, your time and effort in your personal development begins to fade.
If you successfully pass this hurdle, you begin to look at others with a new appreciation and awe of those that truly possess martial arts skills.
So, what I want everyone, students and parents, to do from now on is confidently put a little more effort in everything you do.
In other words just put a Black Belt effort in whatever you are doing in that moment. Even right now while you are reading this....sit up straighter, pay a little more attention and really put effort into understanding and then demonstrating the black belt effort to yourself, your family, the workplace (or at school), your friends, etc...
“Coming to class does not make you a martial artist anymore than standing in a garage makes you a car. Showing up is important but confidently putting your best effort in at all times is the way to be a martial artist.”
"Martial Arts Knowledge does not grow like trees where you dig a hole, plant your feet, cover them with dirt, and pour water on them daily. Knowledge grows with time, work, and dedicated effort. It cannot come by any other means. "
"Martial Arts training can be referred to as the conflict within yourself, or a life-long marathon which can be won only through self-discipline, hard training, and your own creative efforts."