When your battling with your own demons everyday and there is no relief from negative self talk and the harsh judgement that you inflict upon yourself. "I'm not good enough", "I hate my life and the situation I'm in"... You manifest fears of judgement from others and their opinion of you. Your sense of self worth and lack of purpose has diminished. Its a vicious cycle that perpetuates until your mental health is no longer in a positive state. Your mind and emotions consumed by a dark cloud. It can appear in many shapes from different areas of our lives. Perhaps from grief losing a loved one, the breakdown of a marriage or perhaps you were in a toxic relationship or cheated on. We all respond differently but often we choose a victim mindset, an angry mindset, a bitter mindset, a jealous mindset, a self loathing mindset. Guilt and shame can often be harshly self inflicted through lack of sincerity or integrity or forced upon us by others in an attempt to diminish your self worth in order for the other person to feel good about themselves.
These are all natural human responses and its OK to feel these emotions. But don't let them consume your mind, body and spirit.
If you allow it and recognise it, these life situations can turn into the greatest times of personal growth and development you will ever experience.
First you need to know where you can improve. Self reflection and honest friends...
“when we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better too”
Second, do not value material things. Seek out meaningful relationships and avoid having shallow, fickle connections. Money, Greed, Power are all toxic pursuits that poison us and everyone involved. Thirdly, go on a journey and discover a world inside martial arts training that helps dissipate that dark cloud of anxiety and depression. The training and dialogue that will be taught to you will transfer your negative thoughts, feelings and emotions into a more resilient, focused and purposeful individual, with clarity and purpose. Getting started most people may feel overwhelmed by the challenges that the physical aspect of martial arts presents and a little intimidated to even step into a gym or dojo. The fact is that it will be at times, extremely tough. But just keep in mind its within a controlled environment with coaches, mentors a team that wants to build each other up. You will become part of a community and bond with people like never before. Internal Strengths comes from challenging yourself. Step outside your comfort zone.
When you're hitting pads Boxing or Kickboxing and practising skills in Wrestling and Jiu Jitsu, your heart rate will go up. Learning how your breathing can help regulate your heart rate and be your reset button is a major first step to cultivating Mindfulness. An awareness of ones breathe, heart rate, body and mind. Doing these activities you are fully immersed in the present moment and not thinking about outside distractions. Your present moment becomes the only thing of focus. It is like therapy. The more often you put yourself in a challenging situation that is of positive growth (training or competing MMA) your resilience grows. You become quicker, faster, stronger, gaining new skills physically, mentally and emotionally. Your spirit grows stronger. You choose to focus on meaningful things. If you have setbacks you learn from them, embrace them as more opportunities of growth. This message is to highlight that the power of martial arts isn't just physical but in the inner strengths gained. Not only is it an incredible path for those struggling with their demons as already mentioned, but for those who are on a clear path, those who are competitive and want to challenge yourself. There is no better way than training in Mixed Martial Arts and testing yourself competing inside the Cage.
I know very well how powerful these transformations can be. Everything above I have been through personally and am so glad they happened. The best things I gained was emotional intelligence, anxiety gone, depression never sets in because of resilience and focus towards meaningful things.
I also got into Mixed Martial Arts to protect myself and my family, that story coming soon...