During a sparing session, one of the fighters was a little timid during a fight. His skills were not showing. My martial arts instructor Renshi Herbie Bagwell told him: “It is all in your head. From the neck down you have all you need to win”. How many times do we get paralyzed by fear? How many times we lose the fight without even trying? How many times our perception makes us forget our skills? How many times our mind is keeping us away from what we are capable to achieve?
Renewing our minds is a concept shared by various sources. Practices that involve spiritual and emotional cleansing talk about the concept of focusing the mind into thinking positive in order to achieve results. Social cognitive theory in learning psychology explains the importance of life experiences to form what we think of ourselves based on our interpretations of those experiences. Therefore, it is important to take advantage of every situation to learn and form an acceptable, affirmative perception of ourselves. Faith, for example, speaks about believing that something will be done and seeing it done before they are done. Christianity speaks of the renovation of the as well:
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (Romans 12:2)
We often follow a behavior and thinking pattern based on what our environment and experiences forced on us and we end up thinking that we have no other choice but to continue living that way (remember the kid hiding during art class). Let’s give ourselves a chance towards a new life. We can’t change the past, but we don’t have to follow the same pattern. From the neck down we have all we need to win. We have a choice! We can try again! We can try something new! We can still win the fight! We can be born again!