Learning karate and other lessons — later in life… and finding inspiration along the way.

Focus

I really wanted to weasel my way out of testing for my next rank this weekend.  I just didn’t feel like I was ready.  I haven’t been putting enough practice time in for several months… I’ve been too busy with work and life.

A few days ago we did a mock test during our lesson, and I could not make it through even one kata without messing up.  I was sure I’d forgotten everything and it would take weeks to remember it all again.

When I tried to postpone, Sensei Donnie gave me the old “I only had 2 days to prepare for my black belt test and had to walk 10 miles to the dojo, in the sleet and snow, with holes in my flip flops” story.  He told me to just buck up.

So I did — I ate, breathed, slept karate for the next few days.  I’m so glad he pushed me, because it made me realize that I do know everything already… I just wasn’t focused.  As soon as I stopped worrying about how I’d do at the test, and instead shifted my attention into using the time I had left to practice, it changed everything.

It was a big reminder to me about how my thoughts can either pull me down or lift me up. — Patty.

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