Archive for New Year

Roundtable Discussion 008: The New Year

Posted in Discussion Question, Roundtable Discussion with tags , , , , , , on February 9, 2011 by Combative Corner

“Do You Make New Year’s Resolutions? If so, what are they? If not, why?”

I’m a firm believer in goal-setting.  The big problem is that, statistically, resolutions are hardly ever met.  I think this usually stems from a combination of setting unrealistic goals and not working at it one a daily basis.  What helps most (in my opinion) is to write it down… keep it as a brightly-colored post-it note… whatever it takes to help you accomplish it.  I’d give yourself some some short-term goals and some long-term ones.

As for this year, The Year of the Rabbit, I’m stepping it up!  I plan on learning to dance salsa.  Since my future bride (Oct. 7th) is Puerto Rican, both our reception and rehearsal dinner will be full of latin music.  My second resolution is to spend more time on languages.  I spend countless hours driving from one place to the other, listening to the same songs over and over.  Believe it our not, but I used to be relatively fluent in Polish.  I’d also like to learn more Spanish (for obvious reasons).  My final goal is to finish my second book, Ladies, I’m Talking To You (forecasted release, December 2011).  This will just take a strong motivation for me to sit at my computer, turn off my cell phone and try my best not to click back over to Facebook – another time consumer that I should file down.

I am always setting goals for myself, but they have nothing to do with New Year’s Eve or other events.  I look at things I want to accomplish, and then I determine what needs to be done for that to happen. Then I proceed to take the steps necessary to accomplish the goal.

This is a never-ending process, and has little to do with what time of year it is.


This is the first year I explicitly did not make any resolutions. I resolved last year to simplify my life, and I intend to treat that goal as an ongoing pursuit. In the past, setting resolutions have been pretty successful for helping me progress towards my various goals. But my life has gotten busier and more hectic in recent years, making lofty year-long goals harder to achieve.

I’ve decided to switch over to shorter 30-day goals. By shifting my goal timeframes, I find it easier to get myself to take action and make lasting changes. Simple things like getting myself back into a daily meditation practice, flossing regularly, and setting aside personal practice time were my first goals which I’ve successfully managed to re-incorporate into my life. I hope to kick start my Chinese language studies and get myself on a better sleep schedule for my next round of month-long goals.


I do not make new years resolutions because I do not track my life according to the year. In the common way of thinking in terms of years, I do not think that way. I live more of a natural way. Like the animals, they would not know what year it is. They simply live and breath in the moment. That’s what I train myself to do. Like what the Tao would say, you would eat when you are hungry and you would sleep when you are tired.

I simply follow my way. I have no goals, but I still accomplish much without wasted effort. That is the essence of wu-wei, another strong concept of Tao.

I’d already made goals for myself before the end of the year so I guess technically they weren’t new years resolutions. My first goal was to do a better job of planning out my day so I can be more productive.

A big part of this is waking up at 8am to workout giving me more of the day to check off my to do list before I have to teach class. I also decided to put aside more time for my own martial arts training as I have done more teaching than training lately.

I also decided to go back to school this year. I’m not planning any kind career change I just had some free time and saw some classes that would give me an opportunity to reunite with an old love (Art) and explore a new one (Writing).

I think resolutions can be a good thing if people stick to them, but it seems that more often than not people make new years resolutions just so they can break them later. Personally I’m happy to report that all my goals are still going strong!

I never make New Year resolutions.

My main reason for not making resolutions is I feel each and everyone should be striving to do better then the day before.

If you have something you are trying to give up – do your best to deal with it.  If it something that is affecting your family or work life – don’t deal with it on your own. There is nothing wrong with asking for help to gain control again. This is part of learning to master the self.

新年快乐!在兔年!Happy Chinese New Year!Year of the Rabbit! ( My sign is the Rabbit. So this should be a good year:)

What are your goals for 2011 everybody?

Roundtable Discussion 007: Year’s Best

Posted in Roundtable Discussion with tags , , , , , , , on December 23, 2010 by Combative Corner

“List one exciting thing that happened to you this year (in your business/ personal life) and explain why it had such a big impact/or why it topped your list.”

We, at the CombativeCorner would love to hear your highlights!  Let us know in the comment section below.

[Guest – Roberto “Cyborg” Abreu]

I had two moments, one when I won the worlds nogi weight and Open, which was a dream come true.  And the second, my fight against Braga Neto at the semifinals at the worlds which won as the “Best fight of the Year” by GracieMag.  I had a huge comeback after loosing by 6×0, lasting less then 30 seconds of fight after scaping of many tight chokes, I got out of a back attack and tapped him out in a beautiful triangle. It was a tough fight and an amazing finish.


I think some of the greatest things we know were discovered by accident. This past year, I was teaching a Grade 10 girls class self-defense and I had to end the class early in order to get to another scheduled class on time. I was not sure what elemets of the curriculum to teach or not because I had to cut some stuff out for brevity’s sake.

I anazlyzed the curriculum (on the fly) and chose to teach one technique that I thought could be applied to many situations, and that in this case the girls would still be getting some high value instruction.

And man, let me tell ya…that opened up a whole new world for me. I couldn’t stop thinking about that technique, all its applications, and the greater implications for the Hybrid Fighting Method and self-defense in general. The Hybrid Fighting Method now teaches this as a primary means of defense/offense, and will continue to do so for the forseeable future. I will have video up in 2011 demonstrating these things.  (YouTube Link)


For me there cannot be one exciting thing, every year and every day since the year of 2002, the time of my awakening I have viewed every day to be special. I have been living within the present moment since then. While living within the present moment, there is no day that is more significant than another. I do not celebrate holidays like the way common people celebrate holidays, I see everyday to be a holiday, everyday is a birthday, everyday with my wife is our wedding day. Of course there are times the mind or ego interferes and tries to bring in the future or past, but I have learned to identify this ego and become a master over it.


The year two thousand and ten has been an amazing year.  Even though I managed to put this website together and recruit such talented and helpful contributing authors,… even though I was able to create my first audio cd (Fear Shedding) in my audio series on self-protection, my highlight was on July 2nd of this year when I proposed to my fiance, Jenny.

It was a very touching time because we were at Sunset Beach, staying with my best friend’s parent’s home.  July 5th, the year before, my best friend (of over 20 years) passed and our being at Sunset was not only time to be with his mother, but to come together as a family to recognize his life and what he meant to us.  My friend Cyprian (page) would have been enormously proud of Jenny and me, and would have been tremendously honored by my choice of using this time of mourning as a time of celebration.  I know this to be true.  And I’m looking forward to my “highlight” of marriage happening in 2011.


Unfortunately this year has been one of the toughest we’ve faced so far. Literally from Jan. 1st till now this year been a non stop trial by fire and I honestly can’t wait for it to end. Having said that, my high point would be that I’m still here at the end of it all and looking forward to the new year. Also that I had a long list of friends and family to help distract me and get me through it all. Thanks to all of you, you know who you are!


The highlight of 2010 is actually something that happened to my wife. She got tenure, which is a huge deal for a professor. Not only am I happy for her, but it also means I don’t have to move again in the foreseeable future. The nomadic life of an academic made finding training partners and getting classes established a little tough. Every time we moved, we’d have to spend another year just learning about the new place and making friends, only to have to move again. I finally feel like I can settle down.


2010 has been a very hard year for me. Lost a lot of family. Also new Health issues for me have also made this a very hard year.
But we learn from the bad as well as the good.
My Top highlight of the year is that I am Married to my best friend. I am very lucky to be so happy with her. Many other good things as well came to pass this year as well.  I wish you Happy holidays. And I look forward to 2011! Keep training hard everyone!  Yours In Aiki, Robert.



Happy Holidays Everyone!

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