Take charge of your life

To get yourself out of a pit, develop your inner reserves and kick the obstacles out of your way

Fight back difficulties in lifeBouncing back, whether from a financial fall, an illness, divorce or other adversity requires predictable adjustments to your attitude about the situation and a willingness to adapt to new circumstances. Three essential actions can help you move the present situation towards a more positive future: flow, mastery and forgiveness.

  1. Flow

    This is an ability to accept what is, rather than dwell on your personal preferences. Often people go through life consumed by anger or resentment because they feel life is not treating them with the respect they deserve. You abandon spurring yourself on with actions that can lead to new ways of perceiving life. You miss out even on the possibility to elicit help from others. Being able to flow with life has the opposite effect. Instead of becoming paralysed in the face of change, you are able to adjust and flourish.

    • Keep moving

      It is essential to keep moving in life—to continue to set doable targets and then achieve them. Incorporate martial arts-yoga into your schedule. Martial arts-yoga performed2–3 times a week, is a great way to build physical stamina, emotional resilience and mental focus. It also instantly reveals your inner psychology, cutting short the process of figuring out where you are in life and the adaptations required to fight back.

      For instance, when I tell students to stand in a Fighting Stance [feet shoulder-width apart and hands up to defend the face], I observe to see what stance they naturally assume. Some stand with their feet too close together, like when walking on a tightrope. This reveals that when faced with adversity, they easily lose balance and are likely to fall. On the other hand, risk takers stand with their feet so far apart that they have a hard time maintaining their equilibrium if they are confronted with an incoming blow.

    • Respond as per situation

      Calibrating one's force in response to life is as essential as being able to get out of the way. If a potential opponent throws a testing jab, do you always want to knock him out? No. Sometimes, the offence may come in the form of a negative comment or action made by a brother-in-law who has had too much to drink or a boss who is taking his frustrations out on you. Therefore, landing the killing blow, whether physical or figurative, may not be in your best interest in the long run. Nor does it mean avoiding conflicts if required. Defending yourself means not becoming a victim. Instead, quickly gauge an appropriate response.

    • See where you stand

      You can see your own natural tendencies by standing in front of a mirror or a glass window. Assume a Fighting Stance, like a boxer, with your hands up as if to defend yourself or to punch back. Let go and let your body move naturally. Now, look down to see where your feet are. Are they too close together or too far apart, or just shoulder width apart? Repeat this experiment. Now with a sense of your personal style, you can begin to intentionally make adjustments to adapt a solid stance style, which serves as a strong platform that supports your ability to flow.

  2. Mastery

    The second ability is mastery. As you solidify your stance, you become aware of what you are doing with your arms. Do you naturally defend yourself with your hands being just far enough from your face, so that you can see your opponent while maintaining good body position to block his punch or punch him back? Or, are your hands so close to your face that if someone hits you, your hands will actually hit your own face? Conversely, are your hands so far away from your face that you are open and vulnerable?

    • Increase your awareness

      Let's put it all together. Assume a Fighting Stance with your feet shoulder-width apart. Put your hands up, ready to block and punch. Now, imagine a target and punch it. Hit that imaginary target with full force by extending your arms fully. Repeat this 10 times, throwing good, solid punches. The key is in details: as you continue to punch, notice how each part of your body is moving.

      Mastery brings refinement, punching perfects your technique. The goal here is art and elegance. This comes from an awareness and control—in other words, mastery.

    • Recharge your energy

      After completing a round of martial arts-yoga training, stand with your feet slightly wider than your shoulders and bend your knees a little to assume a posture called horse stance. Now, place your left hand on top of your right hand with the tips of your thumbs touching to form the dhayani mudra at your navel. Breathe slowly and deeply. This mudra allows you to accumulate and assimilate internal energy in the navel area. Martial artists use this mudra to recharge their energy fast. And, it is a great way to build and maintain your energy while recovering from a setback in life. Mastery can also be developed by learning calligraphy or a new language, to dance, play volleyball or by taking courses in new subjects. Whatever the activity, this is a great way to return to the position of a learner.

  3. Forgiveness

    The last ability is to forgive.

    • Forgive yourself

      As you undertake these steps and begin to regain momentum in life, it is not unusual to experience a sense of remorse about decisions made in the past, life events that were beyond your control—and circumstances that were. Many get stuck when they direct their anger or regret towards themselves, just as much as if they project negative feelings or thoughts to others. Instead of falling to that temptation, forgive yourself, others and the circumstances.

    • Learn to accept

      Training for an attitude of acceptance and moving forward can be incorporated when practising martial arts-yoga punching. Not every move will be perfect. The goal is to keep working on something until it is well-executed.

      If you are learning to write your name in calligraphy, for example, don't stop because your brush or pen stroke was wrong. Instead, refocus on the task at hand and keep going. Finish what you start to the best of your ability and then, repeat the process, always working towards refinement that leads to art and elegance.

      Bouncing back is about taking action. It is about the process of embracing what is and consciously taking steps to move beyond the blocks in your life.

    • Give to receive

      To be truly successful, there is a need to give selflessly, whether to other people orthe environment so you become entitled to receive more. Find a cause that is working towards the evolution of humanity and the Earth. If you have money to donate, do so. If you lack money but have time, give some of your time to a cause. This is essential to lubricate your entitlement in the future.

By taking these steps, you maximise your potential for a bright future that brings not only success, but also the fulfilment that comes when you share and enjoy what you have in your life and that of your loved ones.

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Del Pe
Modern Sage and Life Mentor, Master Del Pe is a world expert in meditation, yoga, martial arts and energy healing science. His teachings help people 'master life ahead of its time' with practical tools and techniques to live healthier, be happier and grow faster spiritually. He has authored eight books and created several CDs and DVDs for wellness and self-mastery.

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