One of my favorite quotes from the last few years comes from the wonderful world of sports. More specifically, the wonderful world of mixed martial arts.
I like the quote because it applies to life just as succinctly as it applies to fighting in the UFC.
The quote is from Mirko Cro Cop, and he said it before one of his fights about a year or so ago. It was played on TV during one of those well edited segments that show both fighters trash-talking about each other before the fight is broadcast. Cro Cop was responding to one of his opponent’s verbal jabs. The other fighter was talking about how he planned to beat Cro Cop. And that’s when Mirko said, “Everybody’s got a plan, until they get hit”.
If you’re a fan of the sport of mixed martial arts, you know how true that statement is. Every fighter has a strategy as to how they plan to defeat their opponent. And a lot of times that plan goes right out the window the first time they take a solid punch or kick to the side of their noggin.
What a great quote!
I think it can also be applied to our lives, and in a very similar way.
We all have a pretty good idea as to how we would like our lives to turn out. Or maybe more specifically, how we plan to achieve a certain goal. And we often seem to be heading in the right direction. But then, much like a roundhouse kick out of nowhere, adversity strikes. And it changes everything.
And sometimes the obstacles and challenges that come our way are just as devastating to us as a straight right hand to the nose from a well trained striker or a choke hold from a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu fighter.
So the real question becomes, what do we do about it?
Whether we fold up and take a nap on the canvas of life, or stay on our feet and continue to swing is entirely up to us. And much like the fighter who has to change their plan on a painful moment’s notice, we have to adjust to the scenario we are dealing with and find a way to power through the adversity.
Also like a fighter, in order to recover and move forward, we must believe in ourselves and draw on our past experiences to guide us.
I don’t necessarily think it’s easy to quit, as some would suggest. Although it may be the path of least resistance. But quitting something, after you have determined what you want to accomplish and have seen yourself achieving it, is not such a trivial matter. It’s actually pretty lousy to feel like you are forced to give up because of the bad fortune that has beset you.
But being hit changes the way you see the outcome. And often, when the vision is out of focus, the will to persevere weakens.
There have been many martial arts fighters over the years who have been knocked down, beaten up, wrestled to the ground and found themselves only seconds from certain defeat…only to have found the will to overcome and eventually win the fight. Champions are notorious for doing this. In sports and in life.
Successful people in all endeavors have had to overcome adversity. Failure is a part of the formula for success.
When things change as it relates to your success or failure, it only means that you have to regroup and become more confident, more determined and stronger than you thought.
Life will continue to alter itself, people will continue to be unpredictable, and your ultimate goal may, at times, seem further away than when you started. Just don’t give up. Shift your perspective and determine to find focus. If you will fight for it, with everything you’ve got, you cannot be defeated.
Maybe you’ve been hit. So what’s the new plan?