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It’s amazing to look back on to areas in my life that helped me grow into the person I am now. I’ve always been a huge believer in the fact that we will become what is put into us as a child and adolescent. What we learn, who we look up to, what we’re told is important and what we see with our own eyes, is what molds us into the adults we will become. I’m often complemented on my positive outlook and ability to see the goodness in bad situations. Having come from a childhood where I was taught to believe the best in people and to always let the good shine through when everything seemed bad, I can see where this comes so naturally for me today as an adult.

In the same respect, it would be easy to understand where people can be molded in an opposite way. When you grow up surrounded by turmoil and don’t have the best role models, how can you have strong expectations of what it is to be an adult? It’s not easy. It is with hopes that there is one person in your life who can help pull you from the rubble, or that you have it within you to rise about your previous circumstances.

I’ve had the opportunity to know people who are self motivated and moved beyond their current or past situations. Let me take it a step further as to what I’m defining situations or circumstances as: they’re the times in our lives when things unfold in a way that doesn’t seem right or is less than desirable. This could be a tough family life, financial issues, drug or alcohol abuse, neglect, etc. While we may struggle to figure out what’s right and wrong, there are always resources and people there to help guide those of us who need it. You just have to be open to {and want to} find it.

It’s not always {ever} easy, but those of us who can, have a better possibly of being a great role model for someone in the future.

Does that make sense? I hope so.

One thing many know and don’t know about me is the I’m a 3rd degree black belt and trained in one of the best martial arts academies ever created. From the age of 9 the life lessons and skills I learned through Hoover Karate Academy are some that have taken me father in my life than I could have ever bargained for. It was ingrained in me to have self discipline, self respect, self control, self confidence, self defense and self awareness. When you’re a child, you don’t know what some of these large words mean, so it was always easy to understand when my teachers broke down “the Selves” and explained them in a way we could all understand. To this day, the Selves are ever so evident in my adult life and I look at them every day on my refrigerator.

They serve as a reminder that we never stop growing, we’re always moving forward, you must always treat others how you want to be treated, you have to love yourself {so you can love others}, you must have power of your emotions {so they don’t have power over you}, and lastly, we must always give more than we have, to get back what we need in return.

SELF DISCIPLINE – Doing your obligations before doing what you want to do (desirables). Doing what you know in your heart to be right, regardless of popular decision or persuasion.

SELF RESPECT – Learning to like yourself for who you are so that, in turn, you can learn to like others for who they are. To treat yourself with respect is also to take care of yourself and your body. Also, always follow the Golden Rule: Treat others as you would like to be treated.

SELF CONTROL – Self-control means being in command of your emotions and your actions at all times. It means not letting your anger or fear cause you to do or say something that is harmful or hurtful. It also means being aware of your body and what it is doing.

SELF CONFIDENCE – BELIEVE IN YOURSELF. Know that you can be successful. To be self-confident means being proud of yourself without putting down others.

SELF DEFENSE – Protecting yourself and your loved ones only when pain or threat of pain exists. In the martial arts, you do not throw the first strike. However, you need to be prepared in case someone else does.

SELF AWARENESS – At all times, you should know what is around you. You also need to know what is inside of you. By being self-aware, you will be better prepared to deal with everything in life. You will also be able to do the things you need to do to improve. The martial arts can help us become more self-aware in many ways.

It all starts when we’re children and what is put into us by the people responsible for us, and the ones we look up to. So when you’re a role model to someone, put everything you can into them, knowing you can be helping to mold a future. And when you’re quick to judge someone who acts in a way you don’t agree with, remember, we’re all fighting and have fought, our own battles.

Whose life can you make a difference and sparkle in?

-Aurora Beani

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