In times of stress and chaos, fatigue, and depletion, how do you right the sinking ship that is your life?
How do we restore balance and peace when things seem beyond our control? If only there was one standard solution that could be prescribed for everyone. Unfortunately, there is no magic wand of life. But please don’t lose hope, because the solution to elevating your existence starts with simply understanding yourself! Boxing is one empowering tool for your toolbox that can help you navigate this!
Boxing and kickboxing make you show up in your workout, which is a vital ingredient to creating more mindfulness and presence. With boxing and kickboxing, you can’t just numbly go through the motions, blithely staring at a TV screen, like you would on a treadmill. Learning technique, hitting pads, and sparring promote focus. It connects your body and your mind, your emotions, and your fight for life, which combines to aid you in your journey of self-actualization. The various types of boxing workouts, (training with a partner, holding pads, sparring, learning counts, or shadow boxing), all improve hand-eye coordination, foot work, and agility. You develop grit, work ethic, body awareness, confidence, strength, and clearer physical and emotional boundaries. Boxing and kickboxing test your mental and physical limits and in doing so they cultivate self-awareness.
What is self-awareness?
Self-awareness is having a clear perception of your strengths, weaknesses, thought patterns, and beliefs. It is understanding what gives you energy and what drains you. It is accepting and embracing your unique gifts and vulnerabilities. Self-awareness is paying attention to what gives you more life force and what shrinks you. Boxing/kickboxing helps expand your emotional capacity. In essence, self-awareness is knowing and understanding yourself, inside and out, and then letting that knowledge navigate your existence, rather than simply stumbling through life. This inner guidance system is the barometer that helps you create the life that feels best for you. Learning to be more self-aware helps you keep moving forward with a positive outlook knowing that despite triggers and trials, you have the power to dig deep and move forward.
How do you become self-aware?
- Learn to recognize emotional triggers and situations.
- Learn to regulate emotions by recognizing the highs and lows of your mood.
- Set healthy boundaries in situations, and with people, that you’ve noticed drain you.
- Distance yourself from people and situations that no longer serve you or your best interests.
- Pay attention to what foods help you feel well and eliminate foods or beverages that hinder you from operating at your highest level.
- Notice sleep patterns and be diligent about getting the sleep you need.
- Noticing when you’ve given too much of your energy and time to people—without pausing to refuel and reenergize yourself.
- Recognize external positive influences: nature, exercise, meditation, laugher, etc.
Boxing/Kickboxing for self-awareness:
Here are a few ways boxing can help cultivate improved self-awareness:
- Makes you set time aside to be with yourself, unwind, and process your day. Even in high intensity workouts, you can let go and process your day. Hard work can clear the mind of needless worry and our mental checklist.
- Helps you work through uncomfortable feelings. Getting out of your comfort zone, helps you step out of your comfort zone in other areas of your life.
- Look at yourself objectively. Mitt work, sparring and shadow boxing helps you to see the technique.
- To regulate feelings, you must first recognize your feelings. Getting punched in the beginner phases can bring up intense feelings and you will learn to regulate those feelings to stay composed and ready to fire back in a calculated way. What did I feel when I got punches? Fear, froze, rage, sadness?
- An outlet for strong feelings OR a tool to create more life force and energy.
In my own life, boxing and kickboxing have been a tool for digging out of the dark. It has given me an outlet to feel my hardest feelings, and deal with them in a productive way. Boxing has been a lifeline in my battle with depression. It has helped me work through trauma and self-doubt. If you are looking for a challenging physical workout, boxing will do that for you. But it also a way to literally fight for your whole self.