10 ATTRIBUTES OF A BLACK BELT
In the beginning we may not be able to kick and punch like a black belt. This takes numerous years of hard work and dedication to your training. What we all can do though is start thinking and acting like a black belt from day one. This is our outline of our definition of what it is to live the life of a black belt.
- Integrity – A black Belt does the right thing even when no one is looking. It’s easy to be good when people are watching; true integrity is doing your best at all times. We’ll never be perfect while we’re on this earth but that shouldn’t keep us from trying.
- Discipline – A black Belt realizes that all things are possible through discipline, hard work and determination. The best discipline is not one brought forth by others but from one that is found within “Self discipline”. When a person truly has this their potential is limitless.
- Perseverance – A black Belt believes that they can overcome any obstacle put before them if their goal is important enough to them. Remember Eternal Grand Masters favorite philosophy was: “Today not possible tomorrow possible”.
- Self Control – A Black Belt realizes that they are responsible for their own thoughts feelings and emotions. They don’t blame others for their actions. A Black Belt slows down and takes the time to breath. They respond instead of react.
- Belief – A Black Belt has the Yes I Can Attitude! They believe that they can overcome any obstacle that life puts in their way. A Black Belt realizes that they must first believe in self and with that it makes it much easier to believe in others!
- Honesty – A Black Belt realizes that honesty is the best policy. First and foremost we must be honest with self. It is often easier to find fault in others than it is to evaluate self. A Black Belt should be able to look within and find areas they can improve on and at the same time realize their strengths they can build upon. Only then can you truly be honest with others in a positive, respectful manner.
- Respect – When we say “Respect for our Juniors and Seniors” as we recite the Songahm Spirit of Taekwondo a Black Belt realizes that these are more than just words but words to live by. We should respect ourselves first and then all others. Just because someone is different in the way they look, talk or believe does not make them any better or worse just different. Remember the Golden Rule “Treat others the way you want to be treated”. If all would do that, this would be a beautiful world to live in!
- Communication – A Black Belt understands that communication is their link between themselves and the world. They realize that it is important to be able to convey their thoughts and feelings to others. More importantly they must realize that we have 2 ears and 1 mouth for a reason. (Often we need to listen before we speak or react). A black belt realizes that their confidence and body language is a form of communication and when used properly the likely hood of ever having to defend oneself goes down dramatically.
- Self Defense – The first word in self defense is self. A black Belt knows that belief and confidence greatly reduces the likely hood of ever having to use the physical aspects of the art. The way we carry ourselves keeps us from being an easy target. The aura we radiate lets the world know your not one to be messed with. When the egos removed it’s much easier to walk away from any situation. On the defense side a black belt should stand up for what is right. (They should defend but not be defensive in nature). We do not fight unless we have to, when taken to that point a black belt realizes there is no fair fight. They should address the immediate danger, violently counter attack, and evacuate the danger zone.
- Loyalty – Loyalty is something that is often missed in our modern society. Many people tend to look out for self, often at the expense of others. Loyalty is not something that should be demanded but something that is earned. When a person shows the previous 9 black belt attributes to you, you should be loyal to them in return. We should be especially loyal to our family, friends and mentors everyone will make mistakes nobody’s perfect as long as they are on this earth. Be forgiving, loyal and do the right thing these are all important parts of living the Black Belt way.