This month at CMA Utah we tested 15 Black Belt candidates. These kids have devoted a good portion of their lives to martial arts training. As I watched them test, and took part in evaluating their performance, I reflected on my own journey and how my life has changed since I received my first Black Belt.
I learned so much about myself mentally and physically during the years leading up to my First Degree Black Belt and even more after. Being a Black Belt is so much more than just knowing martial arts. It’s having confidence, knowing you are physically and mentally capable of great things. It’s being service oriented as you help fellow students in class and look for ways to serve others in the community. It’s knowing how to focus and pay attention to detail. As you work towards that Black Belt, you will fall, but every time you will get back up again. This is what separates the Black Belts from the rest of the ranks. We know that failure only makes us stronger. There is no giving up.
These 15 new Black Belts will go on to do great things with their lives. They have learned they have what it takes to stick with it when the going gets tough. It would be so easy to give up after a few years of training and say “I’ve done enough.” But Black Belts don’t think that way. Their journey has only just begun.