Studying the martial arts makes you tough, able to confront and overcome fear.
By accepting and delivering force, and by practicing your kicks and strikes and parries and grabs you become more courageous, right?
Maybe, and maybe not!
I say maybe not because there could be something much more basic at work that is helping you to overcome your phobias and to become a more confident person.
What is it, if it isn’t the act of battling?
In a word, it’s EXERCISING vigorously.
In most martial arts classes, that’s exactly what you’re doing most of the time; you’re exercising.
And while you’re exercising you’re also EXORCISING your demons.
By the time your head hits the pillow, which is most of the hitting non-martial artists do, by the way, you’re “lights out" and ready for a deep, refreshing snooze.
Contrast this with people who don’t exercise vigorously. Their bodies aren’t ready for rest because they’ve been resting all day and most of the night, at the office in chairs, and at home on the sofa in front of the tube.
So, they stay awake, tossing and turning, and many of their fears start bubbling to the surface, like lava. The best thing they can do is get up and DO SOMETHING, especially physical. Then, they’re amazed to see that they fall asleep quite easily, without trying.
By the way, almost any form of exercise will build muscle strength, and this will make you feel stronger. Fear and weakness go together, as do strength and confidence.
So, go ahead and study that martial art because you’ll learn some cool, and possibly life saving moves.
But the cool martial arts moves aren’t necessarily vanquishing your fears.
It’s very possibly the exercise itself that is doing the trick.
By the way, this premise can be validated. People who pursue weight training, yoga, and conventional exercise classes can be pre-tested for self-confidence and phobias. Then, after certain intervals they can be post-tested with the same inventories and the scores compared.
At the same time, people who attend martial arts classes can go through the same inventories, and the scores compared. If the premise of this article is valid, both non-martial artists and martial artists will experience a positive movement toward self-confidence.
An interesting question is: Will they experience the same gains, or will one group experience even more, and which group will it be?
Dr. Gary S. Goodman is the best-selling author of 12 books, over 700 articles, and the creator of numerous audio and video training programs, including “The Law of Large Numbers: How To Make Success Inevitable, " published by Nightingale-Conant-a favorite among salespeople and entrepreneurs. For information about booking Gary to speak at your next sales, customer service or management meeting, conference or convention, please address your inquiry to: firstname.lastname@example.org .