The Wellness Dojo Story
Updated: Feb 1
Okay, so what's the deal with The Wellness Dojo?
Glad you asked...
From a very young age, I knew I wanted to help people. I remember that it was very early into my martial arts training, as a young 5 year old boy, when I saw my instructor and first recognized the impact he had on his students and thought to myself, I want to be like that. That's when the goal of becoming a black belt started. Now, had you told that 5 year old boy that under his Sifu (instructor), he would not be able to complete this achievement for another 13 years, the goal may have been short lived!
I was motivated to learn though, and eager to impress my Sifu. I worked hard and enjoyed the process. Eventually, after that first year, my instructor informed me that I may be ready to test for my yellow belt. I had never been more nervous and excited at the same time. How hard would this test be? What if I didn't pass? The what if's flooded my skull and worry took over. But, I had support. I had a community of people; my parents, fellow students, and my instructor, who were all there to guide me and support me. I passed with flying colours! A blast of motivation and pride took over me for what I had achieved and this was the first time I truly believed I might achieve my biggest goal, my black belt! After the exam, my instructor assured me that the tests would get more difficult as time went on and that I must continue to work hard in order to achieve the next stage of my martial arts journey. So, with little time for celebration and with the support of my community, I went right back to work. I worked hard for the next year and achieved my orange belt, then I continued to work hard towards the next level. But, something was different around this time... I was losing motivation. I was tired from being so disciplined in my training. I was getting older and my friends were spending time doing things I wanted to be doing during my training sessions. The journey was feeling very difficult and I still felt so far away from my ultimate goal. I would watch some of our current black belts, people who had what I wanted, people who things seemed to come so much easier for, with envy. I was telling myself that maybe I wasn't good enough and that maybe it just was not in the cards to achieve the black belt...
My dad came to every practice (he still does to this day even though I teach now). After practice one day, he had noticed I was not myself. When he asked me what was going on, I told him I wanted to quit, do something else. I explained to him about how I felt like I was not good enough, that I just did not have the skills that some of these other amazing martial artists had. I said I was getting bored and unmotivated by having to work so hard for little results. It had been over a year this time since I had achieved my last belt which meant my goal was even more distant now... He told me that he would support my decision to try something else if that's what I really wanted, but added a stipulation that I finish that year and complete the current goal to achieve my next belt level, green belt. I agreed.
I worked hard for the rest of the year and near the end of the training season, my instructor told me I was ready. The green belt test went well, I once again passed! I was so excited! Not only did this mean I got to start learning new weapons, but now I was one of the more advanced students in the class and I was one step closer to achieving my big goal, he black belt! After this level, I got to start helping my instructor teach, learned more advanced techniques and found new challenges to push me. Now, I could almost taste that dream goal of becoming a black belt!
As you might have guessed, I eventually did achieve my black belt and I am sure I will talk more about that journey in later posts, but there was a key ingredient to achieving that; Community. If it was not for the community I had around me, the people who wanted to see me succeed, who would not let me fall back or give up, who pushed me to be the best every time I showed up, I likely would not have made it to that ultimate goal.
Now, what the heck does this have to do with my career as a wellness coach or The Wellness Dojo?
Well, working as a personal trainer, massage therapist and nutrition coach, I was constantly trying to help people achieve big life goals. Goals that when they achieved them, they could walk away with a new found confidence and pride. I wanted my clients to leave me with a sense of "I got this!" because they had not just traveled from A to B, but they had created an unbreakable journey, something truly invaluable. Watching some people come and go, many giving up far too early, I knew there had to be a better way. I was tired of the feeling created in big gym atmospheres of show up, do your thing and leave. I wanted to connect with people in a different way...
I reflected on this for some time and thought a lot about my experiences achieving big life goals. What pushed me to achieve things? What stopped me from quitting too soon? Naturally, I thought back to my journey of becoming a black belt. I thought about the many times I believed it was not working, or that I was just "not that person" or "it just wasn't for me"... That's when I knew I had to create something bigger than simply working towards goals. I had to create a community. A Dojo of sorts. The more I thought about what I achieved and how I achieved it, the more I realized it was not JUST about the community. It was about the milestones too. I thought back to that yellow belt and the inspiration I felt from completing that first stage. I re-imagined how achieving my green belt, though a small step in the grand scheme of things, projected me to a lifelong dream. Lastly, it was about proper guidance and knowledge. The wellness industry can be a scary and confusing place. With so much misinformation and contradiction on pain management, weight loss or muscle building, people needed a safe place where they could learn the essentials of what they actually need to know in order to live healthier for longer. A Dojo is a place where you go to learn and grow. In your dojo, you become a family, with unbreakable support and experiences. This is what people need for long term success in their health. This is what was missing!
So, I created The Wellness Dojo Coaching Program! A place where people can be a part of a strong community of like-minded people who will support them and push them up. Where people receive guidance and knowledge about nutrition and healthy living for real sustainable success and can experience a true journey of wellness while completing their levels along the way, eventually becoming wellness black belts!
The Wellness Dojo is not JUST about achieving a goal, it is about personal growth. Creating a journey that gives you what you need in order to live your life the way that you want.
Welcome to The Wellness Dojo! Take a look around and make yourself at home. We have personal wellness services from massage therapy, acupuncture, naturopathic medicine and fitness/nutrition coaching. If this story resonated with you, I highly encourage you to ask about our Wellness Dojo Coaching Program which encompasses this journey fully. Use our coaching services for best results or simply join the community as a solo member!
Feel free to reach out for more information.
aka, The Strength Sifu