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Simple Lessons:

Short, concise lessons and concepts helpful to students and teachers

A Warrior’s Journey Begins With The End In Mind

By Terry Bryan

Whenever we set new goals, develop action plans or set benchmarks in achievement, it is helpful to visualize what things should look like when you are done. To have a vision of what your life or project will look like if everything was perfect gives you a visual target to strive for and begins the process of beginning with the end in mind. In doing so you take charge. You become a warrior in life.

A true warrior always knows where he or she is and which path he or she is on. Since we live in a rapidly changing world, our targets are usually moving. A wise objective today may be a fool’s goal tomorrow. Perfect accuracy on the wrong target is a waste of skill and resources. The warrior constantly updates objectives and targets.

Vague goals are notoriously hard to hit. A true warrior is very precise and accurate in target selection. The warrior never encounters problems, but opportunities for growth based on proper use of strategy and tactics. The warrior lives on the cutting edge of creativity, and using positive, active and growth oriented tactics brings his future to him as he has already determined it should be.

All successful people are obsessive goal setters. Once a person sets a specific written goal, the subconscious begins immediately to develop actions to bring it into reality. Currently less than 5% of people have goals and less than 1% write them down. If goals are so important, why don’t more people use them?

1) They don’t understand the importance of goal setting
2) They don’t know how
3) The fear of rejection
4) The fear of failure

Successful people know that to reach their potential, they must reach out of their comfort zone and experience some risk. Most super successful people succeeded after their worst failures. Thomas Edison failed more than 5000 times in his attempt to create the light bulb, yet his attitude was that he had successfully identified 5000 methods that did not work. In the martial arts excellence implies that you see all failures as challenges for self-improvement and set high goals for yourself. In baseball there are 3 strikes and you are out – in the game of life you can have as many swings as you want as long as you keep trying. True goal setting is persistence in action.

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About the Author:

Terry Bryan is the former General Secretary for the USA-NKF (National Karate Federation), the official governing body for the sport of karate with the US Olympic Committee. He currently is the Executive Director for the American Black Belt Academy, a 501c3 non-profit organization located in Colorado Springs. His column, Simple Lessons, regularly appears on


To find more articles of interest, search on one of these keywords:

martial arts philosophy, setting goals, planning, visualizing, goal setting, warrior mentality

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