“Hey Boss, you won’t make any gains working out like that!” Said the head personal trainer at a gym I used to belong to. “Let me show you how to reach your fitness goals faster.” He added. Hahaha.
He tried selling me a personal training package for a year, week after week, with that awful sales pitch. Of course I never took him up on his offer because first, even though he was half my age, he was out of shape and over weight, and second, I don’t respond well to people who don’t work for me calling me “Boss.” Mostly though, he was never going to sell me on his services because he never took the time to learn what my fitness goals were.
I’m not training for “gains.” I’m big enough already, and what matters to me most in my workouts is increasing youthfulness and vitality. I have a lot of students who are over the age of 35, and many over 60. I’m looking at long term gains in joint and muscle flexibility, bone density, lean and functional muscle, overall athleticism, and brain elasticity to fight the effects of brain wasting diseases. Along with supplements and diet, I feel like I am getting much better at designing custom made training packages that teach practical self defense while increasing youth and vitality.
The next time you want to sell me something, ask me some good questions first. There are a million reasons to do something, make sure you know mine, then you might be able to help me. If I can help you, reach out and we can talk. I promise I will have a lot of questions for you!
Dayton, Ohio – When your child is struggling in school with grades, behavior, or both, you can get very frustrated and concerned. There are many real learning challenges that your child might be facing, but the school will usually screen for or look for those reasons and offer help when found. Often though, the problem has more to do with habits and behaviors, and only you, as the parent, can really turn them around. The solutions will not be obvious to you or you would have already fixed the problem. You need a good behavior coach, and that is my job. I will help you identify the behaviors that are getting in the way of good grades or good classroom behavior. Then, together, you and I will reverse engineer the changes you will coach your child through so that grades and behavior improves and along with it, confidence, self-esteem, and happiness. When you enroll your child in my martial arts program, I will get you there faster. When you put yourself in my boxing or martial arts classes, the process gets even faster. Whether you or your child participates in my fitness based programs or not, you will still find success when you allow me to coach you and your child to a more successful school year. Be prepared to work and get out of your comfort zone though. And if you want to get my most valuable program for free, I am auditioning four families to go through my training as part of a new online tv show. So you get me free in exchange for me taping the process for others to learn from. You need to email me when you are ready to have a better school year. Don’t wait though. Feeling like a failure in school lasts a lifetime.
It really seems simple right? Just show up. It is a simple idea, and it is really easy to do – when everything is new ad fresh, or you are starting to make real money and see the fruits of your labor and the object of your dreams come to life. It is far harder to show up physically, mentally, and emotionally, when the ball stops rolling and enrollment is dropping, and you have two days left to make payroll and you can’t quite pay yourself and your staff, so you are planning on cutting your own check (because you always pay your staff no matter what!) That’s when its’s hard to show up! But that’s when it counts the most!
Showing up is an act of faith. I’m not talking strictly in spiritual terms, (although I am spiritual and I do believe that showing up is a spiritual act of faith.) Showing up when times are tough and stress is high is an act of faith in yourself and in your business. You have to believe and to truly believe, your faith has to have action behind it. “Pray and move your feet” as the Quakers say. As this world is shifting and changing at light speed and what used to work is long dead and gone, you need to keep showing up. Here are my three steps to showing up physically, mentally, and emotionally.
Start your day in gratitude. Sit down and write out a list of everything you are thankful for personally and professionally. This first step will keep you from falling into “victim mentality” and “woe as me” syndrome. The problem with pity parties is that only the worst people show up and the only thing to eat tastes like shit!
Before you start your work day, write out your standards (what you need to feel fulfilled in life), your goals (long and short term both personal and work related), and your daily to do list.
Get to work on the least enjoyable and most difficult task first. Then work until it’s done and check off as many items as possible during the day. Every time you find yourself frozen with frustration or fear, or starting to float on the sea of stress, go back to your list and get back to work.
Focus your mind, plan your day, work until it’s done so that you are productive and not just busy, and show up! These are acts of faith in yourself and your dream that when taken will get you through the valleys and back up on top!
Matt Pasquinilli – On the treadmill, showing up, showing out, getting work done!
One of the biggest challenges that your professional martial arts school will face, will happen when you have one or more employee. Solve the problem from the start and you will grow. Don’t address it and you will never grow to where you want, and you will go crazy constantly putting out fires.
Employee training seems simple. Put them in a room and tell them how to do their job. Every once in a while, get them all in the same room and tell them how to do a better job. This is a good start but you will fall far short of running a professional and meaningful martial arts school of this is the extent of how you handle staff training.
Your students will quit for one of the following reasons. First, they quit when they stop making consistent progress toward a well identified (by you) goal. This means they need to know how to get to the next level, where they are now, and where to get help. Second, they quit because they don’t feel welcome in your program. They need to be greeted every single class by name and get smiled at and thanked for coming to class, at a minimum. Third, they quit because they do t feel heard. They are struggling and feel like you don’t acknowledge or care when they seek your help, or their parents have unanswered concerns that you have not addressed to their satisfaction or at all! The answer to all three problems is a great system that runs your school, great people who run your system, and you holding your people (and yourself) accountable to the system.
You have to start creating and documenting the system from the very start of the school when you are doing everything yourself. As soon as you get an area of your school’s operation systemized, you hire and train a smart and nice person how to run that part of the system. Then you have to regularly, as often as possible when that system as direct contact with members (meaning your front desk, enrollment, and teaching staff,) less often is ok with the system that cleans and runs the back office.
This is a very general and global concept. How you do it is important and if you need help, just reach out to me at email@example.com I would love to help you! No matter how you do it though, you will get stuck hard and fast if you don’t build a system to run your business, hire people to run the system, and become the accountability coach for your people.
Getting stuck in your martial arts business is not something that usually happens at the very beginning. In the beginning everything is new and exciting. There are big hills to climb and always something new that needs to be done. There might be a lot of struggle at the beginning but usually it’s the good kind where you find quick solutions often go hand-in-hand with just working harder. This is the fun phase where you get to tell people that you’re hustling and grinding and that you’re unstoppable – mostly because it feels like you are! The real struggles though, come much later and don’t seem as obvious.
It is easy to feel stuck when you realize that you’re doing the same thing over and over year after year and then you see your numbers stop growing and eventually start to decline. So you go at it like you did when you were at the beginning; you hustle and grind, and you get super busy but you don’t really move the ball down the field like you did in the past. Motivation and inspiration aren’t what you need now, and yes you need to work and you need to get stuff done, but you also need to look around and see how the world has changed.
The world will always change, but you won’t always see it. Or at least you won’t see how it affects your martial arts business. So you might want to read a book l, or go to a seminar, or watch a lot of YouTube videos of people like Seth Godin and Gary Vaynerchuk, but the fastest way out, is to go find yourself a mentor or an outside board of advisors. People who don’t have any interest in your martial arts school at all! People who understand that all businesses is the same and so they won’t buy all your excuses and all the lies you’ve told yourself about why your business is failing. And it is failing because once you stop growing you start to die.
Mentors and outside boards are really just experienced people who will see what you cannot see or what you refuse to see. They are also going to be holding you accountable and will be able to help you see which direction you need to go and they won’t allow you to go anywhere else.
So go find yourself a new perspective and most importantly, and accountability coach, and then you can motivate yourself and seek inspiration and learn new things and most importantly get back to work.
That’s right! You are spending too much time getting motivated and educated on how to grow your professional martial arts school. I’ve been there many times myself. You get really focused on learning everything you can about how to be a better marketer or advertiser or manager. The real danger is that you start to trick yourself. I’ve been there too! You feel the squeeze of not enough students or. It enough income, and so you go looking for better answers to how to grow. There is nothing wrong with learning and new ideas, the problem is that you spend too much time studying and not enough time executing. Action is the answer to your needs. You need to be taking consistent and persistent action. It’s the ready, shoot, aim idea where you get moving and then adjust without stopping. Learn to calm down and not slow down. The more action you take, the faster you will learn. And the learning is real and practical. So go learn one new thing or pick something new to try from the hours and hours of YouTube videos and podcasts you’ve been consuming this year, and do it! As the Qualers say, “Pray and move your feet!”
Matt Pasquinilli is the founder of the non-profit martial arts school Asian Arts Center in Dayton, Ohio and has been managing for profit and nonprofit martial arts schools professionally for over 25 years.
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