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Almost every day I hear from someone that says, “I want to be a black belt.” and then they ask the accompanying questions about training in our system toward that goal. I am always excited when I hear someone with this goal. When I hear this, it awakens the possibility for us to have a journey together that is powerful and creates a lifetime friendship of power and service to others.
The mystique of the Black Belt persona has been created by many different aspects of our society. Let’s all reflect how we first became enamored with the concept of becoming a Black Belt and how and what this means. For me it was at a very young age watching martial arts movies and dreaming of having the powers and abilities demonstrated by some very amazing martial artists. The first, of course, was Bruce Lee and the second was Chuck Norris, who I actually know and have worked for as a bodyguard back in his Walker Texas Ranger days in Dallas, Texas.
So in the beginning I was thrilled by these two great martial arts legends and my beginning thoughts and aspirations were developed from what I saw in them. I wanted to be like them and have that power that I saw in them. What was your experience and aspiration, who was the icon for you?
So you want to be a black belt and you are wanting to create a path to success to get there. Of course it can and has been done by many. In our Shotokan system I have helped many individuals to 1st dan and have several 3rd dan black belts under me. The reason that these individuals had for taking the path, staying with it and completing it is a bit different from person to person. There are some undeniable factors found in all of the people that have achieved black belt under me. Determination and service to others!
Becoming a black belt or anything else in life requires a system. A training system is a path to help you create the desired results toward the goal. The Shotokan system we teach is a layered system that creates a foundation and builds on it. As layers are added the foundation is solidified and in the upper levels mastery is achieved. Those who are successful are determined and never give up. They teach and help others as they move through the process.
So the great icons of martial arts went through this determined process of following a system down a path to mastery. All these great martial artists worked and trained relentlessly to have the perfection they showed in their art. There were no shortcuts and they were very determined and never gave up. One of the greatest gifts my father gave me was to tell me starting at a very early age, “You can do anything you want in life if you try hard and never give up!” He was right, I have done many different things in life, never giving up and achieving them! Where others fail – you will achieve. Be strong, love and support everyone you can.
You becoming a Black Belt depends completely upon YOU! We can help you get there however all the choices are yours and your attitude and determination means everything.
Black Belt, be responsible for your actions, be honest and have integrity, have humility and serve others!