Martial Arts Living Tip: Stop Hitting Yourself!
Hey, Ando here from SenseiAndo.com. Today,
a martial arts living tip. Now, heads up. Like most life advice, this is going to be
heartfelt, but maybe a little pretentious. If you had to deal with a bully or a bigger
brother growing up, you might remember him grabbing your hand and hitting you in the
face with it. “Why are you hitting yourself? Why are you hitting yourself?” Well…are
you still hitting yourself? Why? No one’s holding your hand anymore. Yet, how often
do you hold yourself back from success? How often do you hurt your own chances at happiness?
It’s sad but it’s true… you may be the biggest bully you know. You may be your own
worst enemy. When you start training in the martial arts,
you figure out pretty fast that it’s not only stupid to bully yourself, it’s actually
dangerous. If you take a hit and lose your confidence, you stop fighting back, well,
you’re going to get hit again and again. If you get pinned on the ground and you doubt
yourself, you freeze up, well, now you can’t escape and you’re going to get choked out.
And if your plan of attack doesn’t work and you start feeling sorry for yourself or blaming
other people, you’ve lost your focus. Now, you’ve got no chance. You’re going to
get dropped on your head. Listen to me. Losing your confidence, doubting
yourself, feeling sorry for yourself, blaming other people—none of those mindsets will
ever help you. Instead, you’ve got to train yourself to keep thinking about what you CAN
do, and how you CAN win. No, I’m not saying that a positive attitude
guarantees that you’re going to win every battle that you’re in. You’re not. You
can still lose. You might even die. But until that moment comes, it’s up to you to keep
fighting. You are the only person who can stop you from moving forward. Which is why,
until your last dying breath, you’ve got to believe that you still have a chance to
win. You’ve got to keep fighting. There are no sure things in this world, but
one thing I can tell you for sure is that the moment you give up, it’s impossible
to win. That’s why you’ve got to keep fighting the battle instead of fighting yourself.
Really. Imagine you’re in a fight. The battle is one-on-one. But then you start doubting
yourself. I’m not fast enough! I’m not strong enough! I’m not good enough! Now the battle
is TWO-on-one. It’s the other guy plus your own inner voice teaming up against you. Now
you’ve got to deal with TWO bullies. Now you’re outnumbered. Now you can’t win.
The funny thing is you’d never let someone speak to someone you loved the way you speak
to yourself. I mean, imagine if you overheard someone saying to someone you love, “You can’t
have this. You can’t have that. You don’t deserve that. You’re not smart enough. You’re
not cool enough. You can’t write a book. You can’t start a business. You’ll never
be great at anything.” If you heard someone saying that to someone
you loved, what would you do? You’d march over there and tell them to shut the (bleep)
up. Or you’d punch them in the face. So, the question is, why do you allow yourself
to speak to YOU that way? Here’s what I want you to do. I want you
to make a promise to stop hitting yourself. Stop choking yourself. Stop stabbing yourself
in the back. I want you to defend yourself from yourself. The next time you hear your
inner voice saying something hurtful or unkind, I want you to say, “I’m sorry.” I’m
serious. I want you to apologize. The next time you hear yourself talking trash about
yourself, the next time you’re attacking you, I want you to say, “Stop. I’m sorry.”
Or punch yourself in the face. Look, no matter who you are, life is going
to present you with one battle after another. And yeah, sometimes it can feel like you’re
fighting all alone out there. But you’re not alone. Think about all the people who
are actually on your side. Your family. Your friends. Your teachers. Now think about all
the people that you don’t even know but who would support you and agree with you if
they knew what you were fighting for. Now think about all of the people throughout human
history who would stand by you and fight for your cause. The fact is you’re not alone…
you’re standing in front of an army. Generations of families, and friends, and like-minded
souls who lived and died to put you where you are today. Now, it’s your turn to do something.
Now it’s your turn to win. So, if you want to conquer the world, start
by conquering the bully inside your head. Stop hitting yourself. Then gather up your
army and start marching towards your goals. And if along the way you feel like giving
up, remember—when you go into battle, when someone picks a fight with you, it’s never
a fair fight. Because you don’t fight one-on-one… you fight a million on one.