I hope that 2020 is off to an amazing start for all of our Tae Kwon Do families. By now I’m sure you’re getting back into a routine. The kids have to go to bed earlier, wake up earlier, homework to do, sports and activities are back up and running, and the excitement of the holidays is being replaced by getting back to a day to day routine. 

But I would like to share a few words about how you and our Staff can make 2020 one of the best Tae Kwon Do years yet. Let me discuss with you one of the most powerful tools to help your family member get the most out of their martial arts training this year: Goal Setting! I’m sure that you’ve heard all about this, particularly this time of the year. Maybe you set New Year Resolutions for yourself, your kids, or the family. Maybe you achieved a bunch of your goals for 2019 or maybe you fell a little short. I know I did in certain areas. 

It’s never too late (or too early) to set goals and achieve them. The New Year is a great time to do just that. Psychologists call it the “Fresh Start Effect” when people are more likely to take action toward a goal when there is a distinct time effect or change. Things like birthdays, a new school year, a new calendar year start are good examples. 

So here we are at the start of a new year, the big 2020. I’ve been reading and listening to quite a bit lately about goal setting. I’d like to give some of my thoughts, particularly as it relates to Tae Kwon Do goal setting with the hope of helping the Tae Kwon Doist in your family achieve them this year. I’ve used many different approaches to my goal setting over the years. I’ve done things from full day workshops to writing some scribbles on a piece of paper. 

One of the best things about goal setting in Tae Kwon Do is that there are already very clear and direct goals with our Belt System. It’s a colorful and fun way for kids to see their hard work and effort be rewarded and recognized. And building confidence and focus begins with a positive and structured environment and gets cemented with a sense of achievement! I believe that young and older students alike will feel more confident, energized, and happy when they see themselves achieving!

Whether you’re looking to achieve something tangible like a new belt or perhaps different like getting more flexible or performing a certain technique, I believe the below guidelines will better help make those goals a reality!

Step 1: Be Specific and Realistic in Your Goal

Research shows that being specific brings more clarity to the goal setting process. And don’t start getting into shape by running a half marathon. You may want to start with a walk or light running plan first. 

Step. 2: Write It Down and Set a Timeframe

Writing it down doesn’t make the goal happen but it brings a certain realness toward what you are trying to do. Having a date puts a little positive pressure on the goal setting process. 

Step 3: Have A Written Plan of Action

When I’ve achieved a goal, this step is usually the lynchpin of the process. When I’ve missed a goal it’s usually because I skipped this step. 

Step 4: Evaluate Along the Way and Reassess

Don’t wait until December to see if you’re on track. Check in frequently and be honest and direct if you or your child need to reassess the goal or change the strategy! 

Step 5: Celebrate Along the Way and/or When the Goal is Achieved

I’ll leave this one up to your discretion for you and your family member. But it’s always fun and helpful to celebrate the achievement of a goal!

Well, I hope this helps. It may be a good part of an even larger formula and if you feel like it’s too much, feel free to trim it down.  Let’s work hard to set and achieve our 2020 martial arts goals. Please reach out to me if you have any questions or follow up regarding setting a TKD goal with your child. If there could be a “Step 6”, it would be to ask for help along the way. There’s nothing wrong with that and my Staff and I will be happy to help in any way we can!

Happy New Year and See You Next Class,

Master P