I’ve been training in and studying the Martial Art Aikido for the last 6 to 7 months. I just passed my first rank test and I’ve been getting a whole lot of benefit from Aikido in many profound ways.
This is one of the reasons I read with great interest a story on the internet recently about a situation that happened in Bankok Thailand.
As the story I read detailed…”A manhunt was underway on a Thai island for a British kick boxer who allegedly picked a fight with an American tourist at a bar, followed him back to his hotel and stabbed him to death…The body of Dashawn Longfellow, 23, a former Marine who was awarded the Purple Heart, was found before dawn Saturday at the Yanui Paradise Resort on the island of Phuket with several stab wounds in his chest, said police Lt. Col. Anukul Nuket.”
As I read this story about this scene and what happened and I tried to make sense of it, I spent some time thinking about how much of a bad-ass this kick boxer must be.
Even though I had been training in a martial art for a few months, I got to thinking about how overmatched I would be if I ever got into a situation with someone like this guy.
As I thought about how outmatched I would be if I ever went up against someone like the Muay Thai expert I read about in the article, the thought occurred to me that has occurred to many men when difficult moments come up…
“Why even try?”
This thought of “why even try?” was so pervasive and consumed me so much for most of an entire day that I wanted to stop training in Aikido and never go back to the dojo (even though it has changed me and continues to change me for the better every time I go).
Just like many men who are having challenges in their relationships or marriages think about those relationships, I thought…
Why work THIS hard?
Why go through all this if it isn’t going to matter?
Why don’t I just quit?
After all, I’d never be able to beat someone like that. Forget about the fact that I’m going to be 48 in a few days–it’s just that I’m not that mean to want to hurt someone like that man did. It’s just not in my makeup.
Again, I thought, I’ll never be like that and I never will be so why even try and why don’t I just quit?
This place of “why even try” wasn’t unfamiliar to me because I’ve felt that feeling many times in my previous relationships and my previous marriage and I’m guessing that you’ve felt this way too at some point in your relationships or life too.
Most men have.
It wasn’t until the end of the day and I was taking a shower that the answer come to me in a crystal clear voice about why I shouldn’t quit taking Aikido classes and why you shouldn’t quit either when life or your woman gets difficult and you want to quit.
I’d like to offer you the same paradigm shift I gave myself when I finally stopped beating myself up that night and I started thinking in a more empowering way.
The paradigm shift to consider is this…I’m not now or never will I be fighting against someone else…
My fight is with myself and I need to focus on being the best me that I can possibly be instead of comparing myself to someone else or giving my power away to someone or something else.
That’s right, my task is to focus on being the best me I can instead of focusing on someone or something else.
What I’ve decided to do and what I encourage and challenge you to do anytime the question of “Why even try?” comes up is to turn this question on its ear and spend some time, effort and energy coming up with positive reasons why you should try. (seriously)
Then, what I encourage you to do is come up with a list of reasons why instead of why not. For example: As you think about your relationship with your woman and your life for a moment, ask yourself …Why should you care about becoming the best man you could possibly be?
Why should you lose that 30 pounds you’ve been carrying around for far too long?
Why should you start trying to get a better job even in this economy?
Here’s a question for you about your relationship with your woman or the woman you want to have…Have you “given up” on having something great and settled for less than you should?
If you have, then don’t give up. Just stop it right now.
One of the most critical things you can do if you want a better relationship , marriage or life is to find a way to raise your standards and motivate yourself to being the best you–you could ever hope for.
I’ve heard it said that you can survive anything if you could only find the “why.”
What I’d like to suggest to you is that you find your “why” for living and live from that place. When you do this, your woman will love being with the kind of man who shows up and lives from this place.
No matter what, don’t ever settle for less than you want. It’s not fair to you and it’s not fair to your chosen woman.
Oh, and one more thing…
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