A Guest Post By Nate Miyaki, Author of The Way of the Cancer Warrior
Resentment and complaint are appropriate neither for oneself nor others. – Musashi
What IS is more important than WHAT SHOULD BE. Too many people are looking at “what is” from a position of thinking “what should be”…Circumstances? To hell with circumstances. I create opportunities. – Bruce Lee
The Miracle on Ice, The 2007 New York Football Giants, Rudy, Rocky, The Ultimate Warrior vs. Hulk Hogan at Wrestlemania V. Everyone loves a good underdog story. Why?
It reminds us that it doesn’t matter what your current situation is, or the odds or obstacles you are facing. The only thing that truly matters are the actions you take to change that situation, and ultimately win whatever battles you are facing in life.
We need these constant reminders, because we’ve developed some bad habits living in America Y2K.
THE WHINER’S DISEASE
The Land of Opportunity has become The Land of Entitlement. Most despicably, we’ve become a bunch of whiners, a bunch of complainers these days. Online, in the coffee shop, at work, etc. — bitching and moaning — the disease is everywhere. The worst part is it is highly contagious. It’s gone airborne.
To be 100% honest, I’ve been guilty of such treachery myself.
An iron will used to be the norm in generations past. But many of us seemed to have lost it.
We used to use the greats for motivation. Now we use them to make excuses and feel sorry for ourselves. Everyone has it better or easier than us. They have better genetics. They have a better training situation. They just know the right people. If only we had it the same.
“If only,” is something we think to ourselves far too often.
It couldn’t possibly be that those who rise to the top in any field are taking personal accountability for their lives, hustling, busting ass, and chasing after their goals and dreams. Or could it?
How did a skinny weakling named Jay turn himself into The Renegade? How did your pal Miyaki – with his Little Shiitake and no game – land the girl of his dreams?
I’ll tell you how. It wasn’t by sitting on the sidelines of life complaining about their genetic fate. It was by having the determination to do whatever is necessary to break on through to the other side (and for me, working tirelessly on neck mobility drills).
But some of us have lost that ability to strive, to sacrifice, to rise above our circumstances, to set goals, to do everything possible to achieve them, and to never waver in their pursuit. We’d rather just make excuses, talk shit, and cause trouble for everyone around us. Is there anything more meaningless in life?
So put one foot in front of the other, walk on, and make a difference. Don’t bitch, and don’t wait around for a savior to come solve all of your problems for you. Do your best to solve them for yourself.
4 STEPS TO CHANGE
1. Make peace with the fact that here is always someone who has it way better than you, and there is always someone who has it way worse than you. Who gives a shit? Either way, it doesn’t effect what you need to do to get through your own struggles, and improve your own situation.
2. So stop fucking complaining already (That one’s from my Irish Mama. Picture her flicking a cigarette at your forehead as she says it).
3. Instead, take action. Just take one single step towards changing the situation that you are complaining about. It’s as simple as that to get the ball bouncing in a better direction.
4. Finally, and most importantly, don’t just read about it. Do it.
LESSONS FROM A REAL LIFE BATTLE
Where did I learn these lessons?
I learned it from my dad. Some of the best lessons in life are learned outside of the gym, the ring, or the field, in the infinitely more important game of life.
In 2009 my dad was diagnosed with stage-4 cancer. Patients with his condition last on average 6 months. He battled for 4 years. He faced some kind of challenge every single day, but he kept putting one foot in front of the other and marching on.
In that time, he taught me more about what it means to be a man, to be a warrior, than everything I had learned in the 31 years prior, combined.
If you’d like to learn more about some of these warrior strategies, I wrote a book through his fight
I had to do something to make sure my old man’s legacy and lessons lived on.
This book was written for cancer patients, caretakers, and families battling the disease. But I believe the strategies are equally applicable to athletes, and even more importantly, to facing whatever challenges and struggles you are currently facing in life, head-on, with courage.
Regardless, I wish you the best in your battles my friend. Remember — every second that you waste complaining about something is one that you could have used to make a change.