Since receiving my Senior Black Belt 5 years ago the one thing I learned is to remind myself to reach for newer goals, bigger heights and motivate myself to becoming better. The motivation I have in becoming better every day also helps strengthens my passion to continue my martial arts career that has lasted for over 20 years. When I lived with a roommate in 2019, my goal was to find a place of my own someday and soon enough, I eventually found a place of my own and have lived there since January 2021. Another goal I had was to find a new job that was close to my new home.  After a few months of job searching, I found a job that I can walk to without other means of transportation (i.e Uber, Public Transportation).   The third goal I had was achieving my 1st Degree Black Belt. After 18 months of waiting due to the pandemic, I am finally able to test for this 1st Degree Black Belt. I hope to achieve this goal in November 2021.  My next goal will be to achieve my 2nd Degree Black Belt after 300 classes which may be in two to three years.

Since receiving my Senior Black Belt, I’ve adapted myself to lifestyle changes during a global crisis. Ever since the pandemic started, I had to adapt to learning to do my martial arts training virtually via Zoom. Being a millennial, it was easy to adapt to this because I use my iPad almost every day for web searching, YouTube, etc. Now that classes are in person, I’m able to adapt to go the studio or use Zoom depending on my circumstances.  If my parents are not able to drive me to the studio, I am able to use Zoom.

I also had to adapt when I was furloughed from my first job just as the pandemic was starting its initial spike in March 2020.  I was hired by another company in April 2020 but due to a low workload, I was furloughed again in July 2020.  I was hired by my current employer in August 2020 and have worked there ever since. It is important to me to work and be productive so that I can live independently.

I adapted to living on my own in my new apartment by taking responsibility of chores that were previously done by my old roommate. I set up a schedule of when to do these chores, menu plan, go food shopping, and pay bills.

In closing, since receiving my Senior Back Belt, I learned that I am resilient by keeping my head up despite setbacks, new goals are achievable, and that I can adapt to new challenges.