Empowerment: Give your strength away and be stronger

EmpowermentThe desire to be strong

I’ve been in search of strength for some time. Not just physical strength, but overall strength as a person. The kind of strength that enables you to achieve your dreams and goals and enables you to be you.

Recently I came to realize that a great way to gain strength is to empower others.

Let me tell you my story and why I think empowering others is a great way to gain overall strength as a person.

How I started my search for strength

Although I don’t remember clearly about when I got interested in being strong, I bet I set fire on my desire to be strong by reading cartoons as a kid. I had an admiration for superheroes with great power. But, I wasn’t strong – phsyically or psychologically.

I started Kendo when I was 12, and practiced it for about 5 years. It was my first martial arts, and I hoped to be strong. During the 5 years of training, I didn’t get much stronger. Perhaps I did gain some strength from hard-enough training, but I slowly lost interests in Kendo and shifted my focus on something else.

As far as my psychological strength is concerned, some family related events that I experienced as an early teen gave me some strength. These events became valuable lessons, because I decided to learn from them. Anything negative can be a source of a valuable lesson if you are prepared to learn from it.

The art of grappling

When I went to Australia in 2002, I started practicing Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

Initially, I was interested in becoming more fit, learning how to defend myself, and making new friends through praticing Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in a new environment. It worked well and I still practice it with passion. My new aim involves evolving as a grappler, winning at international tournaments, and learning life lessons from Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

I believe that I derived a lot of physical strength as well as mental strength from Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and I’m keen on becoming a better and stronger grappler. At the same time, I’m keen on gaining overall strength as a person.

But why? Why am I keen on gaining this strength? For me, it’s about exploring my potential and becoming the kind of man I want to be. A man who can do the right thing at the right time, whatever that right thing may be and whenever that right time is. I simply call it the moment of truth and it’s the moment when one faces the toughest challenge of one’s life. That moment might involve some life changing event that can save or kill a number of people. I want to be the kind of guy who can notice that moment and nail it down. I want the strength of this kind of guy.

In fact, I believe that everything I do is a preparation for this moment either directly or indirectly. Of course, physical strength might be required for my moment of truth. Or it’s possible that this moment requires mental strength more than physical strength.

In any case, now you know where I’m coming from with my desire to be strong.

Empowering as a way to gain strength

In the past, when I pondered about how to gain strength, I tended to think about what I could do to myself in order to improve my strength. The focus was myself. This does make sense, because I am the one who wants to be strong and it seems reasonable to do something to myself in order to increase my strength.

But then, I realized that there’s another great way of gaining strength: empowering others.

One of the greatest lessons I learnt in the past few years is the importance of giving and sharing. By giving and sharing, you can amplify what you give and share. If you see the importance of these activities, you will eventually be able to derive pleasure from giving and sharing. Also, these activities help you have the abundance mentality – the mentality that you are resourceful.

In many cases, giving and sharing help you get more of what you give and share. If you help people, they are more likely to help you in return. If you notice the beauty inside people around you, you will soon be surrounded by beautiful people. If you give great experiences to someone, you will be able to amplify these experiences with and create deeper connections with that person.

I believe this principle applies to strength as well. Give strength to people – empower them. Cultivating your strength on your own is good for you, but when you empower others, it’s even better, because it will be a win-win situation for everyone involved; not just you, but also they will be stronger as the consequence of your empowerment.

Let me illustrate this point with using Brazilian Jiu Jitsu training as an example.

My goal is to get better as a grappler. In order to achieve my goal, I need to train effectively and I need great training partners. If every training partner of mine is a world class fighter or at least better than I am, that’s great. But not everyone is in that kind of environment.

While I love training with my team mates and some of them are better than I am, there are more people who are less experienced than I am. What should I do? Just training with better grapplers? No, not really.

I train with less experienced grapplers as well, and I want to help them get stronger. If I help them become stronger and they do become stronger, I will have better training partners. If I have better training partners more than now, I will have better training sessions. If I have better training sessions, these sessions will help me grow as a grappler and achieve my goal.

By empowering others, you can create a better environment for yourself and others, and you can have amazing people around you. That sounds superb to me.

How can I empower you?

The question I wonder, though, is how I can empower people. Yes. You.

I take this blog seriously (i.e. my seriousness is all about ease and delight) and I aim to produce blog content that will empower you in one way or another.

Behind this blog, there’s me. I will live my life with this intention of empowering others and let’s see what happens.

The kinds of strength I want to help you get are the following:

Do you want any of the above? What strength do you want? Why do you want it? What does it mean for you to be strong anyway?

If you want to have a 30 minute brainstorming Skype session with me for free, there are still a number of spots left for new subscribers (See details here). If there is something I can help you with through such a brainstorming session, then help me help you.

Photo: parhessiastes