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3 Lessons Martial Arts Teaches You About Starting a Company

https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/270895

entrepreneur.com

3 Lessons Martial Arts Teaches You About Starting a Company
4 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. I grew up in a broken home, with parents living in different states. I needed direction, but beyond that, I needed consistency. And in whatever location I was in, I found that consistency in mixed martial arts (MMA).

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Leave no holes in your game

To qualify to compete in an MMA fight, you need to be “complete.” In the fighting world, that means that no matter where the fight goes, standing up or if the action goes to the ground, you’re willing and able to do whatever it takes.

When you’re starting a business, at some point you’ll be taken to the ground. Make sure you have an answer when the battle plan -- or even the business landscape -- shifts.

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Get used to discomfort

A business, like a fight, will push you beyond your comfort zone. You will eventually venture into unfamiliar territory.

Understand that it’s possible nothing will go your way, and you’ll have to take a vicious beating. But prepare for a fight and swing to win anyway.

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Set up your squad

Although MMA fighters are in a cage by themselves, a team of highly specialized professionals -- from massage therapists to sparring partners -- is essential for them to succeed in the ring.

In business, you need a team similar to an MMA outfit -- one comprised of people who can see things you can’t and make you strong where you are weak.

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Breathing Is Everything

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Slow It Down

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 Any professional athlete will tell you that the ritualistic nature of slowing down your craft is the key to success in that craft. You have to walk before you can run.

Words Only Have the Power We Give Them

Words inspire, words inform, and words can destroy - if we let them.

The martial arts will teach you not to react to other’s problems, but to pay attention to your own. Learn not to react to words that are meant for harm.

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Your mind gives up way before your body does

Your mind gives up way before your body does

We've all been there when where you are on the verge of throwing in the towel – perhaps just 5 minutes before class ends or in the middle of the most intense part of training. 

As...

You are never truly right or wrong

Like almost everything else in life, there are different variations to certain techniques, which ultimately lead to the same outcome. 

Understand that everyone has his or her own way of achieving a similar goal or outcome.

You’re not as much of a badass

... as you might initially think.

You will also find yourself in situations where you basically get overcome by others – even when you initially felt like you had the upper hand.

No one is truly invincible, so it helps to always be humble and learn from everyone you train with.

Make Your Enemies Into Allies

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Be The Beacon Your People Need

Nelson Mandela was lauded as a courageous leader -- even when he was truly terrified. Like the time he astonished his bodyguard by calmly reading a newspaper while the plane he was flying on had engine failure.

Mandela himself, however, later confessed in private that he’d been truly terrified but refused to show it. Mandela knew that courage is a choice, and everyone can be courageous by learning to cope with your anxieties and fears every day. 

Recruit Remarkable Guides

Niccolò Machiavelli held that using advisors well begins with knowing one’s own weaknesses and selecting advisors to offset them. It’s also necessary to know how to solicit advice the right way.

For Machiavelli, that meant showing advisors he valued their honest opinion and would not punish them for giving it. But, at the end of the day, he was the one calling the shots.