You Already Know The Truth. But Do You Believe It?

Learn the lesson, then find the opportunity to prove it to yourself

Mike Goldberg
3 min readJan 25, 2022

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Photo by Ozan Safak on Unsplash

We know the lessons.

We understand the moral of the story, because our teachers have taught us. We’ve seen the movie. We’ve known the fairy tales since we were kids.

We know the tortoise beats the hare. And we know why — because the hare is arrogant and loses sight of the race, while the tortoise keeps at it, constantly plugging away.

In our daily lives, we lose sight of the lesson because it’s so abstract. It’s hard to believe heart and grit can beat skill and intensity.

Sometimes we don’t really internalize it until it happens to us.

Always up for a new experience, I took a karate tournament class last night. I was the lowest belt in the class. Everyone else was at least 2 belts higher, and there were even several black belts there.

Am I even supposed to be here?

We know the lesson — belt doesn’t matter. But do we believe it? These guys have been training for years longer than I have.

We were paired up for sparring, and I was matched with a black belt.

“Well, this will go quickly,” I thought.

My opponent was a high schooler, and he rushed at me immediately with a fancy kick. I dodged it, and stayed on the defense, studying him.

He fired off a couple more complex moves, which I dodged, and as he exposed himself, I returned with a basic punch squarely in his chest.

We returned to our positions and went again. This time he scored a point on me when I missed a block.

Lined up again, he tried another fancy kick, which I blocked and answered with a simple roundhouse kick. Point!

How did this happen? Did I actually beat a black belt in sparring?

Is it really that hard to believe? After all, black belts are students, too.

Maybe, just maybe, all the lessons we’ve learned from our heroes — maybe everything Bruce Lee and Mr. Miyagi and our senseis taught us about mastering the basics… maybe we somehow knew the answer all along, and…

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Mike Goldberg

3x Top Writer | Traveler | Real estate investor | Storyteller | Occasional columnist | I talk about personal growth and seizing opportunities.