Do you know what’s amazing about accomplishing a big goal in your life? It isn’t just something you do. Accomplishing a big goal changes who you are. After years of training, this past weekend I earned my black belt in Tae Kwon Do. Here are 3 lessons I learned along the way to black belt and how you can use them to accomplish your dreams.

Lessons learned on the way to becoming a black belt - use them to achieve your goals
Accomplish your goals with these lessons.

Lesson #1 I Learned on the Way to Black Belt – Don’t Quit

I know it seems obvious but learning not to quit is the most important – and most challenging! – lesson you will learn. How many times have you started something and then quit when the going got tough? I know I sure have.

There were a bunch of times that I almost quit Taekwon Do. The first was when I competed in my first tournament and got totally beat up. I got punched in the face a bunch of times, knocked down, and started crying and couldn’t breath. (You can read that story here.)

I really almost quit after that. I was humiliated and plus, who likes to get punched in the face? Certainly not me and certainly not for something I was doing for “fun”.

Broken boards from black belt test
Black belt test day – broken boards

Then a couple years later I tore a tendon in my knee and almost quit. But I did physical therapy and got back in it after months of rehab.

Finally, a couple weeks before what was supposed to be my black belt test, I fell doing a flying kick and broke my foot. Unbelievable!

By then I knew there was no way I was quitting. I gave it time to heal then got back into class.

Lesson learned – don’t quit.

What’s an area in your life where you want to accomplish a goal but you are tempted to quit? Share in the comments below.

Lesson #2 I Learned on the Way to Black Belt – Believe You Are Worthy

Believe you are worthy. This is a biggie and it can be a tough lesson to learn because we often don’t realize we are self-sabotaging our own efforts because of our feelings that we aren’t good enough.

Black belt test day - goal accomplished with the support of my family.
Black belt test day – I couldn’t have done it without the support of my family.

I started TaeKwon Do in my 40s, I’m female, and I’m not exactly what you would call a typical athlete. I’ve lost 100 pounds but I’m not exactly skinny.

Compared to many of the younger students who fly through the air with ease, my body prefers to stay on the ground, thank you very much.

It’s easy for me to feel inadequate, like I don’t belong, and that I don’t deserve to be a black belt because I can’t do some of the things other students do.

Yet I believe God set me on this path for a reason. When I lost weight, I went from total couch potato, to walking, then running, then triathlons.

God obviously has a sense of humor because I never pictured myself doing these athletic things yet here I am. He has a reason and because he’s put me here, I am worthy.

Because God put you where you are, YOU are worthy, too.

What’s an area you feel you aren’t worthy and maybe it’s holding you back from your goals and dreams? Share in the comments below.

Lesson 3 I Learned on the Way to Black Belt – Once You Have It, It Can’t Be Taken Away

This lesson might not be a typical one you hear about, but it’s so important when it comes to setting and accomplishing big goals.

Once you have it, it can’t be taken away from you.

Black belt.

Here’s what so cool about accomplishing a goal. Once you acheive it, that can’t be taken from you. I used to compete in triathlons and every finish line moment I’ve had – I carry those with me for the rest of my life.

The person who starts is not the person who finishes.

I’m a different person because I accomplished this big thing.

It’s not just that I got a black belt. Now I AM a black belt. It’s part of who I am.

I work with many women who desire to lose weight, and so often they say they are “starting over” or back to the beginning because they’ve regained weight or weigh more than they ever have. They’ve tried many times and ways to lose weight.

Here’s the thing. You are not restarting or back to the beginning because each time you try, you learn something new about yourself. You learn what works for you and what doesn’t. Take that and use it to accomplish what’s in front of you.

Then once you accomplish it, it can never be taken from you.

What’s an area where you can rely on your past accomplishments to move you forward? Share in the comments below.

These are the 3 lessons I learned on the way to black belt, and I hope you take them and use them for the next big goal you plan to accomplish. I can’t wait to hear about all you achieve.

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3 Lessons Learned on the way to Black Belt - Accomplish Your goals with these tips.