Little Tyler stood about 45 inches tall, dressed in his white do-bok with a light blue belt. Tyler was testing for his dark blue belt in Tae Kwon Do. At the age of 6, he had already successfully earned his yellow, orange, green, purple and light blue belts. In addition to the rigorous endurance training and complicated forms he had to demonstrate, Tyler had to break a board using a back kick.
As he spun around, his little foot met the board with a small amount of impact. Unfortunately, not enough impact to break the board. After trying four times, Master Lee asked him to sit down while the rest of the testing class broke their boards. Once everyone else was finished, Tyler was called back up again to break his board.
Handing his board to Master Lee, he got into position to kick the board. After several more failed attempts, Master Lee gave Tyler a pep talk. He got down on his level and told him that he was not going to let him give up. He encouraged him and told him he would stay there with him until he broke the board. Master Lee was giving Tyler 100 more tries, and he asked the audience to count for him. I watched in anticipation as this little boy tried over and over and over to achieve his goal. At one point, he broke down in tears from the discouragement he was feeling. Master Lee instructed him to "breathe" and he wiped the tears from his face. Getting a second wind, Tyler kept kicking until at last, on the 74th try, the board broke in two. The biggest grin broke out on Tyler's face and the audience cheered.
It was a valuable life lesson that Master Lee taught him that day. Tyler learned he had the ability to keep going even when it was hard. He learned that he can be successful if he keeps trying and doesn't give up. Isn't this story representative of what we all go through at times when we're trying to achieve our own goals?
We set out to achieve something that is important to us - a more organized life, a better marriage, a healthier body or a more positive attitude - only to find that it's not as easy as we thought. We get discouraged and sometimes we want to give up. Some days go well, and other days life threatens to knock us down. The good news is we can develop the characteristics that are needed for us to be victorious with any goal or change we want. You, too, can P.R.E.P. yourself for success.
This day, this week, this month and this year, P.R.E.P. yourself for success. Develop Perseverance and Resilience, reserve and raise your Energy, and practice Positive thinking. Soon you will be on your way to achieving any goal you desire.