Discouraged About Your Progress? Read This [90-second read]

In Coaching, Confidence, Excellence, General, Leadership, Training by Don Alley

Ever had a week that was busy, crazy, you were hustling and pumping, and you knew that you were moving the ball forward… but when you stopped and looked back, you couldn’t figure out what you ACTUALLY accomplished?

Welcome to every human, EVER, right?!

Sometimes, this is also how it feels with our martial arts training.

We come to class, work hard, sweat, stretch, learn, push, struggle… we do all the things.

And then when we look for progress, it’s hard to see, and we wonder if we are actually making any at all.

This is where your self talk and mindset come into play.  How do you communicate with yourself? When you feel stuck, when you feel like nothing is happening, HOW you talk to yourself matters JUST AS MUCH as the actual work.

You MUST believe that the training is working. You have to remind yourself this is a marathon. The progress you desire to see will ONLY come from months and months and years of training.

And so if you give up prematurely, you lose. YOU’RE the only one that can take you out of the game.

I have seen it happen so many times in the last 22 years of teaching… a student comes to class, consistently, working hard, training, head down, grinding away towards their goal.

And then one day, they show up to class, and it’s almost like an overnight shift. They have become AMAZING.

Give yourself the gift of consistency, perseverance, dedication, and commitment to your craft. Coach yourself, encourage yourself, and believe that everything is working forth you.

My advice? Stay the course. Keep pushing. Keep hustling. Keep working. Trust the process, don’t micromanage your success, and KNOW that you are doing a work that is beneficial and worthwhile for your body.

You got this.

One more word of advice? Substitute “martial arts training” for any and every goal you are pursuing, and reread this post. This whole rant is a conversation I just had with myself, as I felt discouraged about this week and the progress I DIDN’T see.

I’m working and hustling, doing what I know is the right thing, and I don’t see the finish line, and can’t even see what I actually accomplished in the last 7 days.

Yet, I know that I’m moving the ball forward. So I push on, hungry to achieve, excited to play the game, giving myself the same pep talk I just articulated. It’s a marathon, Alley. Be like the Robinson’s… and keep moving forward.

Don Alley
Don Alley is the owner and chief instructor at Super Kicks Karate in Ashburn and Leesburg, and has been training in the martial arts for 28 years. He is currently a 6th degree black belt, and has dedicated the entirety of his adult life to teaching children and families martial arts. He is also the owner of Center Stage Preschool, a Montessori-based, performing arts preschool; and co-founder of Testudo Addiction Recovery, a non-profit organization serving families in the Northern Virginia area.