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Business Lessons from the DoJahng

September 6, 2010

In addition to being a web master, my other passion in life is martial arts. It is a dream of mine is to become a master and  instructor the martial arts. Not only that, but to break the stereotype of the “damsel in distress”. I practice the art of Taekwondo at the dojahng (Korean version of Japanese “dojo” or place of practice) at least 3 times a week and I love it. It’s great exercise, but that’s not all I get out of it.

I would like to share some powerful life lessons that three years of martial arts training has taught me. These have helped me in huge ways to deal with my business relations and overcome the challenges I face every day in my career.  Here they are in no particular order:

  • ALWAYS be confident (Even if you don’t know what you’re doing.)

This may sound a bit arrogant but this principle has served me well in business and in my relationships; especially at networking events. More often than not I don’t exactly know how to handle business relationships but instead of trying to apologize or hide the fact that I don’t have clue what I’m doing here or what to say, I walk with head held high and hold my own against my insecurities. When I am wrong I admit it, when I forget a name I ask nicely. And yes, when I have put my shirt on backwards, I rock it anyway. People are less likely to notice that you may have made a mistake if you act like you didn’t.  I’m not saying you should elevate yourself above others, but give yourself the credit that you deserve so that you can win the respect you deserve.

  • Don’t second-guess

Second guessing ourselves usually always leads to either failure or an embarrassing situation. Also it shows that you are insecure about what you think. If you happen to be wrong, by all means admit it but, trust me when I say that you might be wrong a lot less if you get rid of the self-doubt.

  • Technique over Speed

Martial arts is not just about strength. Actually strength has little to do with it! In martial arts, when we learn a new move first comes memorization then technique then speed and power. In other words, hitting the right way in the right spot is 100 times more important than how hard you hit. As a matter of fact, hitting something hard doesn’t do a thing if your technique is not correct. How does this relate to business? Think quality over quantity. Often, if you rush through something you’re going to miss things. Great things and ideas that are successful take time, careful planning and studying. Learn to do it right before you learn to do it fast.

  • You can do a lot in 2 minutes.

When competing in martial arts tournaments we don’t have but 2 minutes to prepare for the sparring portion of competition. For those who haven’t heard of it, sparring is like the martial arts version of a cage match. It’s done wearing gloves, pads on various parts of the body and a face cage; and it’s harder to put on than you would think. Somehow though, I have managed to get all my gear on in 1:30 minutes or less. How did I do this? By taking my time.
 
Sounds contradictory, but the point is this: when you are on a deadline or have time limit on something don’t try to rush yourself and become overwhelmed. Focus on your task and break it down to one thing at a time. Take that first thing and give it your full and undivided attention until it’s done. Then move to the next thing. This helps you get a hold of your focus and keep it. It also helps you get rid of distractions. 

Break things down. You’ll be surprised how much time to can save and how much faster things get done.

  • Find another gear.

My martial arts instructor tells me this a lot,  for good reason. He says this to me when I feel like I can’t possibly do one more pushup or I feel like I want to pass out from sparring.

Finding another gear means never giving up; pushing yourself through no matter how much it hurts, no matter how much you want to quit. It means bringing yourself to another level where you can finish what you started and finish strong no matter what. It’s about not resting until the fight is over. This is especially hard for me and is something I tell myself every day. If you struggle with this too, let me tell you something: Find another gear.

About Jacqueline Rineer:  Jacqueline Rineer is a young entrepreneur,  multimedia artist, aspiring writer and web master who specializes in customized web and graphic design and web development. She is co-owner of a small web design company called ThreeTENSeven Design in Bluffton, South Carolina.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Leah Oviedo permalink
    September 10, 2010 12:08 am

    Lovely article Jacqueline. The point that resonates with me most is Technique Over Speed. We live in a fast food culture where people want to get rich and have a successful business as quick as possible.
    I see a lot of entrepreneurs fail because they don’t take the time to perfect their skills. Whether it is writing a business plan, marketing or sales using social media, we have to know about what we are doing or the customer won’t buy.

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