I respect your privacy and will never sell, rent, or trade your information

One day a young man came to Socrates asking how he could gain knowledge and wisdom.

Socrates and the young man waded out into the sea, stopping when the water was about waist-high.

Socrates faced the young man, as if to say something, and without any warning plunged him under water.

The man thrashed about, violently flailing his arms, desperately trying to get some air.  This went on for what felt like an eternity to the man.

Finally, near the point of death, Socrates yanked the young man out of the water.  Bewildered and confused, the man sputtered and coughed and gasped, heaving in as much oxygen as his lungs would allow.

Then Socrates, in all calmness, said to the man, “When you want wisdom as much you wanted to breathe, you shall find it.”

Many things in life are not easily gained.  Most anything of TRUE value (not just monetary value) requires great effort to be won.  It’s the only way.

We must STRIVE HARD AFTER those treasures.  The crown of victory, the spoils of war, or that certain highly valued “whatever” (fill in the blank) that will change your life for the better, all come about after much effort.

WHAT ABOUT YOU?

What about that new job you’ve been trying to land?  How much do you want it?

How about that promotion you’ve been drooling over, and the only thing standing between you and it is getting a certain credential, or developing a certain skill, or “getting your numbers up”?

Hey, how much do you want it?

Or perhaps there’s a character quality you need to develop that will help your relationships improve, or a key area of yourself or your life that you need to change.

How much do you want it?

I remember talking to a mother of a high school kid—she said he would REGULARLY wake up at 4AM, and practice his electric guitar (unplugged of course!), walking up and down the hallways of the house, practicing riff after riff after riff after riff after riff.  At 4AM!!

You want to know how to become great?  Be like this high school kid.

Do you want “it” as much as this kid wanted to master the guitar?

I don’t know what your “it” is, but if it’s anything that has a lot of value, expect to fight for it.

Like Socrates’ young friend, who fought for the air that would keep him alive.

Go forth now, and strive, and then thrive.

--Sean Cox, Chicago

 

 

I’m Sean Cox,

I write these articles to provoke you to look at your life--to consider where you currently are and where you could be in the future. I want you to break free from the status quo, pursue your potential, and become a razor-sharp asset.

Pay Attention

In Karate, your stance is everything.  Everything flows out of a strong foundation. And, there’s no such thing as NOT being in a stance—just standing around doesn’t happen.  You’re either in a stance, OR you’re moving out of one stance and transitioning into another. The most basic stance is the “Get Ready” stance.  Before you […]

Read the full article →

Resilience

I’m not a big figure skating fan, but I do love the Winter Olympics.  I’m a huge fan of anything that has to do with high performance, and Olympic athletes, wherever they come from and whatever their events, epitomize high performance. United States figure skater Jeremy Abbott had an unfortunate thing happen during a recent […]

Read the full article →

Simplify

We can make things too complicated. I’m not saying we should over-simplify things.  That’s just as bad as over-complicating things. Explanations that are too wordy, lists that have too many items, “must-haves” that really aren’t necessary, strategies that have too many steps, organizations that have too many layers, bureaucracies that have too many rules . […]

Read the full article →

To be Effective is to be Efficient

We’ve been discussing Strategy the last couple weeks.  Let’s continue in that vein. And remember:  whether you’re a butcher, a baker, or a candlestick maker, a business owner, a manager, a homemaker, a bricklayer, or a parent or spouse, these brief discussions on Strategy are relevant to you because everyone uses strategic thinking and everyone […]

Read the full article →

Striking Distance

In Karate, as in all striking arts, there’s something called Striking Distance.  This may not be the official term for everyone, but it’s a crucial idea. The idea is that when you execute a technique—a hook punch, for example—you need to be just the right distance away from your assailant for the technique to work […]

Read the full article →

Strategy

When we have a goal, we need a strategy.  HOW will we achieve that goal? I’ve been an avid weightlifter for many years.  Disciplined and dedicated, since I was 11, when my Dad bought me my first set of barbells. It’s always been an important way for me to recharge my battery and clear my […]

Read the full article →