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Thoughts of a "Master"

Coach Evans, Master in Taekwondo, discusses life and lessons he has learned through his years of training and interacting with other human beings.

Just a Rock into a River

The other day, on a trip through the US, my 7 year old son threw a rock into a river we were walking by.  After he did, he immediately turned to me and said, "Dad, if you throw a rock in the river, it changes the river forever."

Yep, just some Buddha like wisdom from an innocent kid.  It got me thinking about how we treat others.

We come in contact, one way or another, with many humans on a daily basis.  Online, at work, at the store, etc.  Every interaction with someone else is this: us throwing a rock into the river of their life.

It may be a positive rock, a negative rock, or even a seemingly neutral rock.  But a rock is thrown in their river and they are changed from it.  Just as a real rock in a real river, we may never know how we affected their life and to what extent.

A single kind word, a good deed, or a friendly wave can have a positive effect on their life.  Just as a grumble, sideways glace, or ignoring someone can have the opposite.


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I'll start with a quick story from my life in martial arts:

When I was 12, I was already a Sr. 2nd degree black belt in Taekwondo.  I had been practicing TKD for at least 5 years non-stop.  3 days per week.  I had to wait at my rank for longer than normal due to age requirements.  With no testing in the foreseeable future, I felt bored.  I typically didn't have to try hard to "beat" the other kids in my classes and I didn't get corrected much for anything.  In my forms, I was good enough to not get "fixed".  I constantly got the, "Great! Now sit down so the next kid can give it a try!"  I WAS BORED!

My 12 month membership was just a couple months away.  I knew that as soon as it hit, I was done.  No more TKD.  What was the point, anyway.  I obviously was the best I could be.

Then my instructor noticed the boredom in me from just going through the motions.  He asked me to come to the Teen/Adult class one day.  I...

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Ownership of our Lives

If you've ever seen an argument on Facebook or even real life, "lack of ownership" was probably to blame.

Ownership is taking responsibility for our lives.  There is an inexhaustible amount of topics we could discuss, but here are some quick ones that come to mind.

Actions:  It has got to be #1.  No one makes me do anything....ever!  All of my actions are completely up to me.  Others can suggest, try to force, or threaten, but I still choose to take any action (or inaction) I do.

I hear time and time again how upset someone is on Social Media.  "It ruined my whole week!"  Well guess what, even if you did nothing to warrant an argument or beratement on Social Media, it was your choice to open the app, scroll along and allow yourself to be a part of whatever upset you.  Own your choice.  It's your fault you are upset.  If you don't want to feel that way, don't get on Social Media!  I'll take ownership of my actions.


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Who do you want to be?

Who do you want to be?  Not a simple question.  You can be nice, respectful, caring, a jerk.  Anything.

When we're young, we are typically told what to be.  "Be nice." "Be a hard worker." "Be obedient." (Incase you don't know me well, I HATE that word!)

The thing is, you can choose to be whoever you want to be!  It doesn't matter if you are 10 years old or 100.  You have the choice.  You are the ONLY one who has the choice.  If you want to be kind, then decide that you are kind and live that way.  If you want to be a jerk, then own it and live it. (Though we all wish you wouldn't, it is still your decision.)

So how do we decide who we want to be?

First, list the qualities that you want to have and are important for you.  Kind, respectful, caring, knowledgeable, strong, courageous, the list could go on forever.



If we are lucky enough to have more time on this planet, then we know that...

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