Goal Setting, Goal Tracking

This week’s Beyond the Mat lesson, “Designing Achievable Goals,” was one of the most helpful lessons from my first degree test in 2015. My fellow advanced candidates and I are experiencing surprisingly less stress over the huge amount of checklisting and the daunting fitness baselines this time around, and I think it’s partly because we learned to look at the tasks ahead of us, break them down into chunks, and tackle them one at a time. I know that, as long as I follow the plan, I’ll be in good shape for each of our deadlines. Let’s get into the practical application…
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Why Martial Arts?

It’s strange to have the word “martial” in your favorite hobby when you’re a non-competitive person like me who actively avoids confrontation. It’s doubly strange when, instead of doing one of the “artsier” martial arts, you end up in a mixed program that borrows heavily from the UFC.

Inertia vs. Long Term Goals

Beyond the Mat Lesson Five: It Takes Daily Commitment (Constant And Never-Ending Improvement) This topic is certainly timed well. Checklisting ended two weeks ago, and Tres warned us that these next three months will be the most difficult part of the black belt test. Looking back at the unceasing daily grind of technique checks from the last three months, it was initially difficult to believe. But the difficulty lies less in the actual training, and more in your mental approach without the structure of daily progress checks. So how do you maintain that same level of day-to-day improvement, let alone ramp it up to the next…
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Discovering Your Potential

Last week I took a gamble by signing up for five consecutive days of intensive training at Freestyle’s black belt candidate camp, while simultaneously pushing to meet deadlines and move forward in my freelance programming career. Going into this test, and going into this past week of training, involved a lot of committing myself first and figuring out if I could succeed later… but I think it totally paid off!

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