America's Best Karate Center
Monthly dose of inspiration from 
ABK
Powerful Word Of The Month:
TEAMWORK!
Dr. Robyn Silverman
Young students: “Together, we get the job done!”
Older students/teens/adults: Working together to achieve a common goal.

Week 1 Teamwork defined: What is a team? What is teamwork?
Week 2 Success & failure: How does sportsmanship & effort affect teams?
Week 3 Leadership & lessons: How can I contribute & learn from the team?
Week 4 Disagreements & compromise: When should I stand up vs stand strong
     
Dear Family, 
This month we will focus on the powerful word; “teamwork.” 

When a team works together, great results can be expected. Successful teamwork can shorten the time, divide the effort, and increase the morale of a group that is working towards a common goal. 

Great teams accentuate strengths, compensate for weaknesses, and bring out the best in every member. Goal setting and goal-getting just seems easier. Perhaps that’s why T.E.A.M. is said to stand for “Together Everyone Achieves 
More” or sometimes even “Together Everyone Achieves Miracles.”

 We want all children to learn about the benefits of teamwork and effective teams. Of course, all teams do not guarantee the production of teamwork nor do they always guarantee success. Sometimes teams can house toxic members, poor management or a negative culture. 

Therefore while we must teach children the many positive 
functions of teams, we also must teach them when to speak up and challenge the culture of the team when warranted. Speaking up can be tough for anyone, 
especially children who just want to be accepted. Yet, this is a necessary practice for leaders. 

Studies tell us that teamwork is an important part of both school and work-life and that people see the value of teamwork for everyone, including children. 
Pew Research Center recently asked a national sample of adults: “Regardless of whether or not you think these skills are good to have, which ones do you think are most important for children to get ahead in the world today?” 

Across the board, most respondents said communication skills, reading, math and teamwork were most important. Perhaps the results are not surprising because children find themselves in teams often-- in the home, in school and after school. Children who work together for a shared benefit, realize that all team members are working towards the same goal and all gain the rewards of achieving it. Together, they gain self-awareness, develop empathy, sharpen strengths and learn self management skills. It’s not always easy but together, everybody wins! 

Thank you for your support. You are pivotal in helping to make our school one of the best personal development centers in the world. 

Best Regards,
         —Your Motivated and Dedicated
                                                   
WHAT IF COMPLAINING WERE ILLEGAL? OH, WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD IT WOULD BE!
We all know a person in our lives that cannot stop talking about their problems, challenges, injuries, health concerns, relationship troubles, and much more. They come in and immediately put the focus on them and their tale of woe.
Be honest…do you like being around these people? I’m sure some of them are good friends and you want to help them out. You want to be a good person and listen to them, be a shoulder to cry on, and possibly even offer suggestions.
Does that ever help? More than likely, the answer is no! In my experience, this gives them the green light to complain more, sulk more, and put all their troubles on your lap.
The reality is complaining is a way of getting attention. They have something to say and they want you to agree that they have it so much rougher than the rest of the world.
What if that person accepted 100% responsibility for the position they are in. What if they accepted they are in a tough spot, whether it was their fault or not, and decided they are going to make the best of it with a great attitude.
Mike Smith was the head coach of the Atlanta Falcons from 2008 to 2014. In his book, “You Win in the Locker Room First”, he talks about installing a NO COMPLAINING POLICY.
Smith says people that complain are energy vampires and will drag a team down. Be careful who you surround yourself with because they may influence your attitude in a bad way and make it difficult for you to achieve your goals.
Nelson Mandela was arrested and put in prison for 27 years. Did you ever hear him complain while serving his sentence or after he got out? The answer is NO! When asked what he was doing while serving out his sentence, he said he was preparing. WOW! Now that is a great attitude!
The Swahili term “hakuna matata”, means no worries. What if, instead of complaining, your knee jerk reaction was, “No worries!”?
You think to yourself, “I’ve got this. Yeah, it’s a minor inconvenience, but I will make it through. No worries!”
Tony Robbins says your life will completely change when you trade your expectations for appreciation. So instead of thinking everything should go smoothly for you and there should be no trouble in your life. Focus on everything you have to appreciate and be thankful for.
Think about it. I have a wonderful family, great wife, awesome little girl, and I work with an incredible team. I have said it again and again. The best people in all of South Florida train at Elite Force Martial Arts. And lucky me…I get to see them 6 days per week!
So first I challenge you to go one week with no complaining. Discipline yourself. Sure, it will be tough. Writing this reminds me not to complain!
Put an alarm reminder in your phone that says, “trade expectations for appreciation” and have it go off 3 times per day. This will serve as a gentle reminder to focus on gratitude and eliminate complaining.
Complaining drains energy. Appreciation enhances energy and puts you in a great mood.
Train hard, be your best, and make someone feel great today!
The Elephant Rope
 
As a man was passing the elephants, he suddenly stopped, confused by the fact that these huge creatures were being held by only a small rope tied to their front leg. No chains, no cages. It was obvious that the elephants could, at anytime, break away from their bonds but for some reason, they did not.
He saw a trainer nearby and asked why these animals just stood there and made no attempt to get away. “Well,” trainer said, “when they are very young and much smaller we use the same size rope to tie them and, at that age, it’s enough to hold them.
As they grow up, they are conditioned to believe they cannot break away. They believe the rope can still hold them, so they never try to break free.”
The man was amazed. These animals could at any time break free from their bonds but because they believed they couldn’t, they were stuck right where they were.
Like the elephants, how many of us go through life hanging onto a belief that we cannot do something, simply because we failed at it once before?
We see this a lot in our martial arts training don’t we. Students that struggle with a particular technique or requirements to advance to the next rank start coming up with reasons why they can’t do it or won’t be able to do it instead of trying to find the solution to overcome the obstacle. “I’m too old, I’m not flexible enough, my work schedule makes it impossible, my child has ADHD and so on and so on.”
If everyone would just understand that the obstacles, the struggle and the failures along the way are actually the necessary ingredients to becoming a black belt champion it would be much easier to accept and even embrace them!
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