It will soon be the new year. Have you thought about what you want to achieve as a modern warrior?

No! Not pointless resolutions about martial arts, parkour or fitness.

Instead, make your words and actions count in 2017. Start by being desperate to achieve your goals.

Be desperate for success – Mindset Change

Until you are desperate enough to succeed and take action, life will remain the same. You are going to give the same reasons to neglect your goals. Too little time… Too much work… And so on…

Your resolutions should be nearly as important as breathing, if you want to succeed.
Your resolutions should be nearly as important as breathing, if you want to succeed.

The truth is, you’ve failed to achieve your resolutions because they just weren’t important enough. To be accurate, your goals aren’t as important as the other factors in your life.

And there is no shame in admitting that.

Obviously, parents should prioritize their kids. While college students (who struggle to pay tuition), have to contend with working while studying. Likewise, someone who is injured or facing a mental illness should focus on rehabilitation and recovery.

Yet, whether the reasons are valid or not, the fact remains that you have not devoted time and energy towards your goals. Then, why bother being unrealistic with your expectations in the first place? Why condition your mind to accept that you will never fulfill your resolutions?

If you are going to make goals and resolutions in the first place, then make sure you are desperate enough to make it work.

You see. A person who is drowning would seek air desperately, no matter what it takes. And if you do not feel that desperation and hope about your vision and goals, you are bound to procrastinate. If you cannot make plans to adapt your life to work on your future dreams, you are giving yourself further stress.

If you want your fitness goals to work out, you need to be realistic and desperate. It’s time to make that happen.

What You Need to Do

Get a notebook ready and follow the instructions for each section (in a box that looks like this).

1. Know your warrior vision

Close your eyes and dream big. Do not let your self-doubts limit you.

What do you actually see in your future, years ahead? 

Know your warrior vision

Notice what you see, hear, feel and experience from that modern-day warrior vision. Does that excite you?

Now, imagine if all that never ever happens. Imagine you remain at status quo five years downs the road. How does that make you feel?

Does the thought of being who you want to be, excite you enough? And does the fear of staying the same scare you enough?

Let’s get to work.

What You Need to Do

  • What is your vision, three to ten years from today? Write it down and include photos (and videos) that represent what you see.
  • How do you feel when you imagine yourself achieving this vision?
  • What feelings engulf you when you see yourself remaining the same (or worse off)?

Example: Travelling Judo practitioner & Street Workout Athlete

Vision: To travel the world to train with others in Judo, and to go beast mode with new friends in the street workout community.


  • Sense of freedom
  • Connection to a greater community
  • Sense of achievement

If I stay the same (or worse):

  • Despair
  • Depression
  • Anger

2. Break your vision down into small yearly goals

What you need to do is to break your vision down into achievable steps (yearly goals). 

Street workout ninja

Remember the vision you saw, think about what you want happen by the end of 2017.

Define what you want through setting no more than five simple goals. The fewer the better. Don’t fray your focus. Also, be specific and set a earlier deadline for each goal.

Your objective is to progress on to the next step each year.

What You Need to Do

  • Write no more than five things that you want to work on in 2017.
  • Keep them simple and specific.
  • Once you read the section on resources and limitations, you should refine them to be realistic.

Example: Travelling Judo practitioner & Street Workout Athlete

These may be your 2017 goals (if you are a complete beginner in street workout but experienced in Judo):

  • Be good enough to pass the requirements of my Judo shodan test (by June)
  • Join a street workout training program or local group (by February)
  • Set aside $1,000 for “travelling the world” (by November)

3. Know your resources – who and what can help you?

After you know exactly what you want out of your training, determine your resources. Know who or what can help you get to where you want to be. And list those resources.

Resources for goals

Make sure to list resources that are useful and relevant to your goals.

Want to build a solid foundation for calisthenics? Go for the Convict Conditioning program.

Want to be start out in street workout? Use this program designed by the Bar Brothers themselves.

Want to test your obstacle course traversing abilities? Train for and join a Spartan Race.

After you know your resources, knowing what you need to do to achieve your goal should become more intuitive. But to truly be successful, take note of the next step.

What You Need to Do

Make a list of the resources you have and need to achieve each goal.

Example: Travelling Judo practitioner & Street Workout Athlete


  • Training program by Bar Brothers or BarStarzz
  • Advice on travelling on a budget from travel bloggers
  • Facebook and Meetup groups from all over the world for street workout and Judo
  • Local street workout groups
  • Judo training partner
  • Judo sensei
  • Workout program by a Matt D’Aquino (Judo Olympic Champion)
  • Investment books to passively grow the money for travel
  • A positive family member or friend (to encourage me when I meet setbacks)

4. Know your limitations

List all the limitations you have. Include your constraints in time, energy, finances and health.

List your limitations in goal-making

For instance, if you have a chronic shoulder injury like me. You should include the injury as a limitation. Of course, you need to find a way to make your goals happen despite the injury. You can even change your fitness goals to accommodate recovery and rehabilitation.

What You Need to Do

List all your limitations – anything that may prevent you from working on your goals.

Example: Travelling Judo practitioner & Street Workout Athlete


  • Lack of money
  • Limited time and energy due to university
  • Commitments to repaying student loans

5. Plan for success – overcome your limitations

For each limitation you have, you either adapt your goals to make it realistic to your limits or think of solutions to overcome that limitation.

List your self doubts and overcome them. Be flexible.
List your self doubts and overcome them. Be flexible.

There is definitely something you can do, no matter how small. You just need to be open your mind and be flexible. Make use your list of resources if it helps.

You see. There are two kinds of people. People who view life negatively and positively.

Negative people complain about everything, even when solutions are presented to them. Many of them wait for perfect circumstances before working on their goals. The problem is, life will never be perfect. They end up going through the same motions without change.

Positive people see possibilities. They view obstacles positively. They know that to succeed, they have no other choice but to make sacrifices. And they create workarounds for their limitations. If they have other priorities, they avoid giving themselves unrealistic resolutions that will never be worked on during the year.

Don’t get me wrong. I am not an optimist. But, I’ve come to understand that viewing everything negatively shuts your eyes to opportunities.

So, there is no point in worrying about negative what-ifs. But you can certainly create workarounds to help you work on your goals, when you open your mind to possibilities.

What You Need to Do

Think of ways you can adapt your goals to overcome those limitations. Don’t forget to use your resources to help.

Example: Travelling Judo practitioner & Street Workout Athlete

Plan for “Be good enough to pass the requirements of my Judo shodan test (by June)”:

  • Ask sensei and my training partner for feedback on technique weaknesses
  • Find out if my training partner is willing to stay longer after class to help me with extra training
  • Ask sensei if you can volunteer help in maintaining the dojo’s website, in return for a small discount in fees due to financial difficulty
  • Switch to weekend classes

Plan for “Join a street workout training program or local group (by February)”:

  • To save money on formal classes, find a street workout group in university that I can join
  • Make use of video tutorials to get the technique right
  • Ask someone in a street calisthenics group to help spot me
  • Devote one hour in the morning before uni classes to train
  • On busy days, slip in 20 minutes of workout before lunch and between classes

Plan for “Set aside $1,000 for travelling funds (by November)”:

  • Consider freelancing in writing to earn additional cash on the sidelines
  • For the money set aside, find out if treasury bonds is a good way to grow the cash passively

Making Sensible Goals Today

Change your mindset and follow the steps above. If you are ready to make some change and sensible goals, join the completely new Way Of Ninja group. It keeps you accountable to your goals and you can seek help and motivation from fellow modern warriors.

Now, for your first challenge, go on ahead to the group and share your vision, goals, resources, limitations and plans. Either write them down on paper and take a photo or type it in directly. Make sure to introduce yourself too.

Submit it by 8 January 2017, once you’ve joined the group.

Other Resources

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