“I am determined”, she told me. “I’m not going to let this derail my streak.” I was relieved to hear her say that. I was at that moment trying to decide if I was going to write about how increased exercise reduces the risk of heart disease and blend in a Valentine’s Day theme (February is American Heart Month) or do something with Groundhog Day and ask if the reader feels in a rut. . . you know, doing the same thing over and over and wondering why they’re not getting better results? But to be honest, the thing I hear in February the most is excuses; so, I was glad she was not giving me one; instead, she was going to be determined.

Now that the New Year’s parties are over and we’re sweeping up the confetti everybody is a little fuzzy on those resolutions that they made a month ago. We are back at work, the kids are back in school, and after all that eating we did at the holidays, we all know it would be a good idea to get back to the gym, lose a few pounds, and try to get healthy again, but. . . who has the time? People I just had conversations with about how 2020 was going to be their year to do it different can’t remember where their inspiration went.

I felt fortunate that she confided in me and told me she was struggling. Stress at work and a busy personal schedule had given her a big mental push back toward old, unhealthy eating habits. She wasn’t sure how she was going to do it, but she was too invested to give up now.  It’s much better to know than wonder why a student suddenly starts missing class. I am a Coach and if I know you’re struggling, I can be a support system. Everyone goes through periods of self-doubt; this is normal. When she lost her inspiration, she remembered she had an intention. Goals give purpose and I can remind a student the reason for their intention. That’s just kindness and February 17th is Random Acts of Kindness Day so it’s only fitting.

To be honest, what impressed me most was her courage. When one is DETERMINED, one has made a firm decision and is resolved not to change it. Yes, it’s ok to have doubts, to stumble, or to be afraid. Meaningful change is a marathon, not a sprint. It’s being resolved to carry through with a decision made with a reason that is the very definition of courage and what I mean by adopting a philosophy of warriorship. It is the way of Bushido; one of seven characteristics to be cultivated by a warrior. Fear is human, acting despite that fear is Budo. That’s what we do at Decker’s Martial Arts Academy and why it can work for you.  Anyone can adopt a “Warrior Lifestyle” philosophy, benefit from its tenants, and can be applied to all aspects of life. It’s important to be determined to succeed.