Win the Inner Battle with Mawi

You have more in you than you can imagine.

Meet a Jigna

by Mawi on May 24, 2011

In my native language of Tigrynia, the word Jigna refers to a legendary warrior who can never be defeated under any circumstance.  Mental Karate gives Jigna awards to the very best Mental Karate Black Belts. I am excited to introduce you to Hannah, an 8th grader who is our sole 2011 Jigna.  You can read Hannah’s Jigna essay below.

Hannah - 2011 Jigna

“My name is Hannah and I go to Cumberland Middle School in Cumberland, Wisconsin.  I was born and raised in Rice Lake, Wisconsin until I was twelve years old.  We moved to Cumberland to be closer to my mom’s teaching job.  I am very involved in school clubs and activities.  The sports I play are basketball, softball, volleyball, and track.  I have one sister named Anne who is a freshman in college.  My sister and I recently became very close after losing our dad to a recent illness.  I always remember the quote that says, “You don’t know how strong you are until strong is the only choice you have.”  I live by this quote because I had to be very strong through the hard time in my life and reassure myself that everything was going to be okay.  During this time I focused on Mental Karate and overcoming a challenge just as I was in my own life.  Mental Karate has impacted my life tremendously.  The strength and confidence that I have gained through it is incredible.

Initiative, to me, means taking the first few steps in order to overcome a goal or challenge.  The three goals that I set were: studying thirty minutes each night, practicing dribbling and ball handling for basketball twenty minutes a night, and running three times a week for fifteen minutes each night.  During this time, I worked really hard to earn my first belt!  The initiative belt taught me it’s possible to set goals for yourself, and even if they’re hard you can push through them to get to the end. I was very happy to receive my first belt and continue on with the things that I challenged myself to do before!

The contribution belt was by far the most difficult, although at the same time it was my favorite.  The reason I liked it so much was because I love helping others and going out of my way for someone that needs it.  The four things that I did to earn contribution were: helping my family save energy, helping a classmate with homework, helping the community by adopting a family, and helping the world by recycling and picking up litter.  My favorite thing that I did was  adopting a family. ”Adopt a family” is a program where you help out a family in need and buy them Christmas presents.  The reason that I thought this was really cool was because I was making someone’s holiday special and giving them the opportunity to have a Christmas they won’t forget!  The contribution belt allowed me to be thankful for what I have and I learned that doing something very small can help a lot of people. Although this belt was very difficult to complete I took extra time to work on it.  The hard work paid off when I completed my second belt!

For the discipline belt, I worked out for thirty days.  I did five minutes of running, five minuets of arm workouts, and five minuets of leg workouts making that a total of fifteen minutes each day.  I worked really hard on this belt by writing almost a whole paragraph each day telling what I did.  The discipline belt showed me how to stick with something even when it gets hard. Whether I woke up early in the morning or stayed up late to do it, I always ended up getting it done!  Also during this time I was dealing with the loss of my dad.  There wasn’t a single day during that time when I stopped because there was to much going on or I couldn’t find the time to do it.  I was very proud of myself for sticking with my thirty days even though I was going through a very difficult time in my life.  After thirty days of extremely hard work, life changes, and late nights or early mornings I became so much stronger not only physically but emotionally and received the discipline belt!

Courage, to me, means when a task is difficult or scary you find the bravery within you to overcome it or get through it.  The three things I did for courage were attempting the impossible by getting straight A’s, facing a fear by speaking in front of people in a class, and asking for help in band class when I had questions.  During the process of the Courage belt we were working on making folders of things that inspire you or show courage.  Some things that I put in there was a picture of my dad with an explanation of why he inspired me and how he showed me courage in my life.  Another thing I included were quotes about courage and inspiration.  In the future, I will use that folder to look back on and be able to give myself courage when I am scared or when I just need inspiration.  After a month I saw improvement in band class from talking and asking more questions. I almost got all A’s, and I learned it’s possible to face a fear and talk in front of people even when its scary.  After working extremely hard on this I was receiving yet another belt and using courage in my life more then I ever have in the past!

Awareness, is something that everyone needs in their life.  During the awareness belt I paid attention to my positive mindset, negative mindset, and I taught two people about the survivor mindset.  My positive mindset was being cheerful. Being happy has to be one of my favorite things!  Whenever I see other people happy it makes me want to be happy too.  To work on being more cheerful I told others to be happy and tried to spread being more cheerful to others!  The negative mindset that I worked on was expecting perfection.  Expecting perfection is something that I do all the time!  When something doesn’t go exactly how I think it should I automatically get frustrated or think that nothing is going to go right anymore.  To try to eliminate expecting perfection so often, I started to tell myself that everything was going to be okay, and there was nothing to get worked up about. The two people that I taught about the survivor mindset was my sister and my mom.  I think teaching people about a survivor mindset is very important.  The way I taught it was when you’re in a situation you have to look at the positive before you look at the negative. I hope that in the future they will both use the information and skills that I told them about and stay positive instead of negative!  After thirty days again of hard work becoming better at expecting perfection and being cheerful I received the final belt!

As I sit here today I honestly can say I couldn’t imagine my life without Mental Karate.  I was taught strength, confidence, endurance, and all around life lessons. I believe that Mental Karate will always be a part of me and will always stick with me.”

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