A Fresh Start

Over the last few months, I’ve been thinking a lot about how I wanted to make my reintroduction to this blog. Aside from still trying to nail down a catchy title, this makeshift RMAI designated news and discussion forum started off fairly well. While it wasn’t the most consistent, I was motivated to draw in readers and martial arts enthusiasts with different discussion points.

Then, somewhere along the way, writing— something that’s always come natural to me— didn’t seem so natural anymore.

The desire or motivation to write wasn’t as strong as it used to be. When I did find a suitable topic that sparked some interest, I couldn’t efficiently organize my thoughts and every sentence appeared erratic. Even now, I have a picture in my head of exactly what I want to say and how to say it, and yet, barely three paragraphs in, I'm struggling to articulate it.

Maybe I’ve lost my edge.

In the last blog post, I discussed the difference between motivation and discipline. Motivation is our internal drive or reason for action and discipline is the force that keeps us going despite any contrary desires to give up if and when motivation loses its flame.

Be it the bustling nature of life, or the lack of structure to write that my time in school had always provided, not only had I lost the motivation to write, but my internal discipline to keep the candle burning had also been snuffed along the way.

When a student reaches the rank of 3rd Gup or Brown Belt in Pilsung Moo Do, they are required to learn and recite at least the first four of the 14 attitude requirements .

When I earned my brown belt, I made it my mission to learn all 14 and recite them with absolute precision. While these attitude requirements apply to our martial arts training, we can also follow them in our everyday lives.

The 12th attitude requirement reads, “when you begin to feel idle, try to overcome this.” In training, when you start feeling bored or lazy with the material, it’s up to each person’s individual discretion to reignite that spark, so to speak. Be creative.

I became idle with the blog, and I did not overcome that lethargic and unamused feeling like I should’ve done. I succumbed to my lazinessand didn’t pursue any proactive solutions to combat the urge to give up .

Attitude requirement number five says, “practice basic techniques all the time.” This point is reiterated again in the ninth requirement: “repeatedly practice all techniques already learned.”

I’m now realizing that no matter how good you are or may have been at something, you should always revisit the basics so that your craft never becomes unfamiliar.

Whether it be low block-center punch, Hosinsul, mathematics, or writing a three-pronged thesis statement for a persuasive essay, you ought to always, always, review the fundamentals. Although I’m convinced writing about how unorganized and frantic my writing has become is, ironically, still reading as frantic and unorganized, I know the only way to improve is to go back to the beginning and keep practicing.

Just like you wouldn't learn Pilsung Il Jang without learning how to do c-step, you shouldn’t expect your first post back after a six-month hiatus to be a masterpiece.

With that being said, here’s to a new chapter. I’m still without a name to call my stream of consciousness but nevertheless, it’s time to get back to basics and grow from there.

14 Attitude Requirements:

  1. The purpose of training should be the enhancement of mental and physical betterment.

  2. Serious approach.

  3. All out effort.

  4. Maintain regular and constant practice.

  5. Practice basic techniques all the time.

  6. Regularly spaced practice sessions.

  7. Always listen and follow directions from instructors and seniors.

  8. Do not be overly ambitious.

  9. Frequently inspect your own achievements.

  10. Always follow a routine training schedule.

  11. Repeatedly practice all techniques already learned.

  12. When learning new techniques, learn thoroughly the theory and philosophy as well.

  13. When you begin to feel idle, try to overcome this.

  14. Cleanliness is required after training. Keep yourself and surroundings clean.