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Embracing Progress in Karate and Life: Start Where You Are, Use What You Have, Do What You Can!

In our fast-paced world, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the multitude of tasks and responsibilities that await us each day. Whether getting ready for school, managing our workloads, or pursuing our passions like Karate, the feeling of being paralyzed by the sheer magnitude of it all can be all too familiar. However, by adopting a simple mantra and embracing the power of progress, we can navigate through the chaos and find our way to success. Today, let’s explore the profound wisdom behind the words …

“Start where you are, use what you have, and do what you can.”

Just like my daughter struggles with organizing her thoughts in the morning, many of us face similar challenges in our daily lives. We often stare at an extensive to-do list, unsure where to begin or how to proceed. During these moments of overwhelm, we must take a step back, breathe, and remind ourselves to start where we are.

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Lockdown Update

As many of you know York Region was ordered to go into lockdown as of Monday, December 14th and as a result, for the next 28 days, we can no longer hold training in the school.  Given our planned holiday closure, this won’t affect our training too much.

That being said, for the next week, we will be taking classes back online which you can access through Zen Planner.  I’m thankful that so much work has been done that we can quickly adjust to this platform.  On top of that, we’ve made some improvements to our online program so it will be better than before.  For this week, we will be running an abbreviated schedule (Monday – Thursday) and adding to it in the new year. 

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Knowing yourself is so important.

Something happened last week and it reminded me of the importance of knowing yourself. Based on what happened, I don’t think enough people REALLY know themselves.

During our Leadership class, we talked about our personalities and the participants had to describe themselves in three words. After that, they had to identify some of their greatest strength and some of their greatest weaknesses. What came out of all of this was quite shocking to me.

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Have courage and achieve your goals.

I had a conversation with a friend last week and as we spoke, it reminded me of the importance of courage. If you want to achieve your goals, you need to have courage.

My friend and I hadn’t spoken in a long time. After catching up, inevitably, we got on the topic of how our schools were doing. When he asked me, I said “We’re doing GREAT!” Students are training regularly and improving and as a result there’s a bunch of students receiving new belts this week. I then asked him how he was doing and it was completely the opposite. I couldn’t help but feel for him and it reminded me of the message of the week.

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It’s all about developing self-control.

If you’re going to achieve anything great, you’re going to need to start developing self-control and patience.

Part of my job as a teacher is having uncomfortable conversations. This week, I spoke with a parent about their child’s progress and it was exactly that. The conversation was uncomfortable because I had to tell them that their child wasn’t ready to move up a rank. As we spoke, we came to an understanding that this wasn’t anybody’s fault. The fact was that the child wasn’t mature enough and there is very little you can do to help that. Accepting that takes self-control. Not trying to change that, takes patience.

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Believe in yourself. I do!

If you believe in yourself, anything is possible. It’s optimistic and hopeful, but I believe it to be true.

I was speaking with a student this week, and we were talking about them achieving their Black Belt. As we spoke, I got the feeling that they didn’t have a lot of faith in themself. They really questioned whether or not they’d be able to achieve their goal, and that broke my heart a bit.

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Opportunity vs. Obligation

The idea of opportunity vs. obligation blew my mind last week and now I’m looking at things totally differently and it’s GREAT.

I was speaking with a friend of mine and during the conversation, I was complaining about how much time it takes to keep up with email, phone calls, and all the jobs like that. Once I was done complaining, he pointed out that I should stop complaining and look at things differently.

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