by Don Heatrick

Sundays tend to be a reflective day for me, and my Sunday posts therefore share more personal insight…

Both of my own thoughts and feelings, and a personal look behind the scenes of my own life too (in case you’re interested).

This morning, while out exercising my dog Logan, I found myself considering a post from a fighter I’ve worked with online, and our subsequent (message) conversation…

The shit had hit the fan

An ill attempted sweep from a training partner in sparring had seriously damaged their knee…

Scans are needed to determine the extent of the damage…

But a 50/50 prognosis on being able to return to any physical activity in the long-term (Muay Thai included) is the reality right now.

Like I said, the shit has really hit the fan.

This is an extreme example of what some of you are facing at the moment…

But now entering the second week of the New Year, it’s obvious that for all of us, our fortunes are ALREADY very mixed…

Some of you are already flying! Making great progress and finding fantastic opportunities. 

While others already have had great setbacks to deal with.

The pandemic, injuries, family issues, work issues, etc, etc…

So much can loom out of the background and punch you in the mouth – rendering your plans useless.

Depending on the severity, and the nature of the setback, the impact on your plans of course varies.

However, it’s important that we understand that ‘The Plan’ was only ever a snapshot, based on the circumstances that we had at the time we formed the plan.

There’s a high probability a punch in the mouth is coming, that will either merely result in a fat lip, or leave you unconscious with a broken jaw.

You often don’t get to influence what that outcome is.

You only get to influence how you react to it.

It’s a matter of scale, but for any setback or trauma, you will go through the 5 stages of grief; denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and finally acceptance.

Recognise this is what’s happening emotionally, and allow yourself to run this course.

And please, please remember…

The biggest tests are the biggest opportunities to level up your mindset.  

That’s why you were drawn to Muay Thai in the first place, it was the challenge.

If it was too easy, you’d be bored.

And what’s the point of anything that you do?

For me it’s to take the hand you’ve been dealt, and play it to the best effect.

Sometimes you get a shitty hand, and you have to deal with that.

Just dealing with it is winning.

Many out there can’t deal with it, they’ve not put in the practice.

Take this struggle and use it to practice. It’s your test.

Remember, as bad as you have it, others have it worse…

Be grateful you have the mind to feel anxious, and even limbs to be annoyed at for not being 100%!

Be humbled there are people out there that are absolutely smashing it in life despite far bigger constraints than you have.

Be that indomitable character that inspires others to think, “And what’s my excuse?”

Don Heatrick

Founder of Heatrick Strength and Conditioning

Don Heatrick is a family man from the UK, former mechanical design engineer, European Muay Thai silver medallist, former pro Thai boxer (ranked 4th in UK while aged 40-years), a Muay Thai coach, podcast host, and the go-to expert on Muay Thai performance training with over 25 years of coaching experience.

Don helps ambitious fighters and coaches take their game to the next level by bridging the gap between Strength & Conditioning, Performance Science, and Muay Thai.

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