Apparently, it’s better to try it and fail than not try at all…

I made a big decision today- I’m going for my black belt in karate. This means a grading, and before that, months of tough training to prepare.

Karate is something I consider to be a large part of me as a person. It’s my main hobby and a lot of achievement has come from it. To be at the belt I am now (brown with two white stripes) has taken 8 years of training and about 15 gradings. So I’m kinda proud of what I’ve done. I am definitely not amazing at the martial art, I’m just good enough to have passed the gradings. With training anyone can do that, but hey, I’ve stuck at it for a long time!

Getting to black belt is different to getting to any other belt. Though the other gradings are scary and difficult, black belt is a whole new level of terror. The sensei who judges is pretty much the leader of the type of karate I practice. And he’s petrifying.

Two girls in the same year as me have already passed their black belt, which should make me feel better about attempting it. However, having seen them in lower-belt gradings, they always got the highest pass and are obviously exceptional. Not to mention they did a junior black belt grading due to their age, but because I’ve turned 16 this year, I’d have to do the adult grading! I’m NOT AN ADULT!

A good friend of mine might be doing it with me. That would be good- for moral support- but there’s extra pressure because I’d hate to fail and for her to pass. Yeah, jealousy, pride, all that. It would sting a lot.

Apparently training for black belt is draining. (hey, that rhymes!) Constant criticism and self-doubt. A few mental breakdowns have also been promised.

But, if I got black belt, that would be the BEST ACHIEVEMENT EVER! Literally the biggest thing I would have succeeded in. I think that would be worth the graft.

Nerves hit me in waves when I think about the fact I’ve accepted this challenge, but, as the title says, it’s better to try.

At least I think so. Right? Have I made a good decision?




8 thoughts on “Apparently, it’s better to try it and fail than not try at all…

  1. I did Mushin Shotokan Karate and gor to purple belt. I loved it! The community was my family but sadly I had to stop as it was getting too expensive and school was hectic but Im so glad I initiated it. 😄

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hey Sunset I was a Tracy Kenpo practitioner for about 6 years, walking away from Karate was one of the worst moves in my life and unfortunately came at a time that the travel and drilling just became too much for me. But if I can offer up some advise from someone who has faced the anxiety of belt tests

    Dont sweat the destination of the black belt, its just another rank at the end of the day and the journey wont end there. embrace every day of the journey.

    You may not be the best martial artist in the world by your own opinion but everyday are not you going there aiming to be the best martial artist that YOU can be? if so you are already succeeding man!

    Traditional martial arts are all about self improvement, self discipline as you no doubt are aware. The only opposition you have to face is yourself, if other students appear to be advancing faster, dont sweat it. You have your own game to play, your own fight to handle. your only opponent on those mats is yourself.

    You mention being sixteen and a little nervous about taking the adult exam, I am not really old persay but I have about ten years on you, and I gotta tell ya man you are going to face adversity and challenges every day of your adult life BUT if you can approach everything in life with that same discipline and passion you show in your karate you will be just fine.

    But I just realized this post is months old already so. How did you do?


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Jorden, this comment made my day.
      You’re right about everything you said, I do just need to focus on my own ability. It’s a shame that you had to give up karate, but like you said adversity can’t be avoided sometimes!
      Even though this post was a month ago I’m not much closer to black belt. The earliest I’ll do it is probably next October, but the training is really going to step up between now and then. So yeah, it’s going alright now thanks.
      It was lovely reading your comment, thanks a lot!


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