You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.
— Marcus Aurelius
The last 1.5 months didn’t see as much writing as I had hoped for book two – a great deal of personal activity altered my focus, which delayed not just getting much more writing done, but also the five-year plan was somewhat delayed.
My son was notified in mid-January that he was being sent for his Air Force basic training. This event was in the works for several months, but we didn’t know exactly when it would occur. Alas, when Caleb wasn’t working at his interim job, I tried spending as much time with him as possible before his departure on Monday, February 28. Then, the dojo I had been using for another passion – martial arts – needed my attention. The location I had been using for a dojo was no longer available, so I was on a frantic search in the same city to ensure the students did not suffer a lapse in their own path. I’ll offer additional updates below on that journey.
Finally, writing is like any other pursuit – life sometimes does have a way of interrupting whatever plans you have developed.
Martial arts are an inspiration for me – whether in person, on film, or in books. I began my personal journey in early 2010, and I’ve never looked back. In the spring of 2018, I was offered a unique opportunity to help lead the classes in the Sedalia/Warrensburg area. Since I took on that role, I have learned to enjoy martial arts more than I ever thought possible. For me, leading two classes twice per week and now a once per week iaido (sword) class has been exciting. I am able to continue my own journey while helping other students learn how to defend themselves and/or their families from a potential assault.
Of course, martial arts is not just about self-defense. It can be meditative insofar that it is a very individualistic artform. Essentially, each student progresses at their own pace with the guidance of the sensei and help from other students. Progress is witnessed by how much effort one spends in class and outside of the dojo. The realistic goal of any self-defense study is to learn how to defend without thinking; for example: you block an attacker without thinking about which technique to use.
Finally, martial arts offers an excellent method of maintaining flexibility, cardiovascular endurance, and strength over the course of your life. It also gives an opportunity to the student to keep their mind focused on the moment without distraction from outside sources, which ties into the quote offered at the beginning of this update.
During my search for a new dojo, I used all the resources available to help reduce the stress of the situation. By the beginning of March, we were in a new location with no lapse in our training. Throughout February and March, I continued my path with iaido. I promoted to shodan (black belt), which offers even more opportunities to continue my martial arts path. To learn more about iaido go here.
The update for next month’s inspiration:
I enjoy viewing lists offering the best of a various genre and why they can be very important. Here is one recent example to help whet your appetite. These types of lists help me find new items to help my imagination.
I offer you a challenge for the next month:
Ensure you take a few moments to relax.
A place to ponder the world of writing, among other things.