Word of the Month for January is: Perseverance
It goes by various names; determination, staying power, steadfastness, endurance, diligence, tenacity, grit. It is a trait that is very much necessary for success in anyone’s life. We think it is so important that we made “Perseverance” one of our 12 recurring “Words of the month.”
Webster’s Dictionary definition of perseverance is continued effort to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure or opposition.
Too many people make the mistake of assuming that a very successful athlete or artist or business person was essentially lucky, somehow born with the physique, brains or whatever is necessary to succeed in their chosen field. But more often than not, the champion figure skater who makes salchow and lutz jumps look easy wasn’t born knowing how to spin in the air gracefully. They learned it through years and years of practice, patience and perseverance.
Legendary Martial artist and philosopher, Bruce Lee once put it, “I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.” He knew the value of perseverance and consistency in practice.
In Karate, we know our students can learn about perseverance through repetition. We teach our students to keep practicing particular techniques over and over until they feel confident to move on to more complicated moves building on the previous ones. Our Instructors work with our students and teach them not to get frustrated or lose patience and give up on themselves when things get tough because that is what perseverance is all about. Even when things get difficult or complicated, our Instructors encourage every student, regardless of their level, to keep pushing forward and to keep trying until they are successful at completing their task.
At Bernardo Karate, our students are learning focus and discipline and mental toughness. They are also learning how to goal set and how to break through obstacles and potential roadblocks. These are all important traits and qualities that require perseverance. Sensei Tammy Bernardo says, “If you take a look around at our dojos you will see Black Belts who used perseverance to accomplish goals at each and every belt level. Achieving your Black Belt does not happen overnight. It takes time, hard work and a ton of perseverance. As the saying goes, “a Black Belt is a white belt who never gave up”. They persisted and persevered right until the end even if it was challenging or difficult along the way.”