The Person most likely to Attack You!

Mass shootings, car bombings, riots, and genocide are words that we hear all to often in today’s world. 


We are faced with some pretty harsh realities every time we turn on TV, the radio, online…..pretty much anywhere we get our news these days.

It is easy to get caught up, to begin to worry about who is sitting behind you in the theater. About that noise you thought you heard. About that stranger walking too close to you in the parking lot……but……

The reality is right now, statistically speaking, is the safest time to live in all of recorded history. For the most part we come and go through our daily lives in relative safety, without the threat of injury, dismemberment, or death from our fellow man.

The sad reality is that we are more likely to get attacked by ourselves than anyone else.

Our heart is more likely to harm us than anyone else. The killer hiding downstairs is the refrigerator! Filled with type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure….and some Tupperware with some  new strain of fungus growing steadily.

quickreliefWe are more likely to be harmed by our device, induced insomnia. By our inability to sleep and decompress without some show, movie, or podcast blurring in our headphones than anyone hiding under our bed.

We are more likely to sabotage ourselves with self doubt, with apathy, and just plain laziness then have someone tamper with our brake lines.

The good news however is that we are our best defense against……..ourselves. Here are a few tips of keeping you safe from YOU!

  1. Turn the devices off! Take time to be connected to people not the internet. To be surrounded with silence every once and a while. IMG_0994To get lost in nature more, and online less. The truth is we are designed to be a part of the world around us, to engage with people, places, and things, and without the aid of a screen.
  2. Trash In, Trash Out! You literally are what you eat. Pick foods that make your body feel good, even if the don’t make your mouth feel good. Buy foods with an ingredient list as small as possible, and made from ingredients that you can pronounce without a chemistry degree. Eat to enjoy the next ten years of your life, and not the next ten minutes.
  3. Invest in Yourself Everyday! Your success, your joy, your health is not a result of major change over short periods of time. It is made from small, incremental changes that we stick with over time. That crash diet… going to crash in a few weeks, but the decision to eliminate carbonated drinks will pay dividends for your entire life.

These are just a few, but they are more than enough to get you started. Good luck, and GET UP, GET OUT, and GET MOVING!



-Joshua Page,



Gardening for life…..

Water the seeds you want to grow, remove the weeds from your life, to make room for the habits you want to flourish, surround yourself with people who want to enrich your soil, and not just enjoy the fruits of your labor.

Running in Circles

  We have all had the experience of running in circles. The feeling of chasing our tail. Of doing what seems like a lot, and accomplishing what feels like very little.

However the circles we run today set the foundation for success to come. 

Success and life seem like they should be linear, but like everything in the universe they undergo constant changes, beginnings and ends that at first glance seem like a cat chasing his tail, a beautiful disaster, but on closer inspection are all nessesary pieces of an amazing and purposeful puzzle. 

Embrace the choas of today, to experience the beauty of what is to come.

-Joshua Page

Thanks for being…..Annoying 

Thank the people who……get under your skin, that annoy you, that are rude, difficult, selfish, and sometimes just downright mean.
They are the ones who reflect all the things we don’t like about ourselves……help us overcome them, that force us to be better, make us rise above the petty and unpleasant parts of our personality. 
Our kindness and forgiveness towards them, spills over and helps refine us into the men and women of character we want to become.


  No greater friend, no worse enemy.

The currency of our lives, slipping uncontrollably out of our hands.

It drags, it flies, but always marching ever forward.

Take a moment to breath, to appreciate, to fully be a part of the time slipping by us all.

Be connected to the people and things you love and enjoy. 

Share your love, share your smile, share your time…..none of them are infinite…..but somehow together we can make them last forever.

-Joshua Page

Reaching your Dreams

Your dreams are only in reach while you are awake.

Rise from your Dreams to rise up to the challenges and opportunities that will make them a reality.

Take the step most won’t. We all dream, but most of us won’t take that first step towards our dreams and desires.

Do not rise gently, but with purpose, with intent and clarity, and when that seems impossible, simply rise and put your head down into a run, or exercise, or anything difficult until it does.

Finally and most importantly smile. Smile and enjoy the ride……you are one of the few awake people, living their dreams.

Joshua Page,

Getting a Reward

Rewards, trophies, bonuses, titles are all powerful motivators.

Companies use it to drive productivity, schools use it to improve grades, parents use it to encourage good behavior. 

Rewards are great, and they work well…..but they are only the first step in reaching your potential, in reaching the high levels of success and happiness. 

When we start to see past the rewards, past the carrots dangling in front of our faces, we begin to see the action is the reward. 

That eating healthy is its own reward, exercising is the reward, that self improvement is the reward…..that doing the right thing is the reward….then we will not need the trophy, the carrot, the promise of something good coming our way. 

When we seek to do the right thing in every interaction, every opportunity, we make room for ourselves to be successful, to be happy, and to be blessed with infinitely more than a carrot on a string. 

-Joshua Page

Being a Nail to Become a Hammer


Everyone is prepared to win. To accept victory. To hold the Trophy. 

Not everyone has wrapped their brain around being…….well……just plain whooped. 

It takes the right frame of mind to accept that today was not your day, that no mistakes were made in the judging, no excuses can explain away, no amount of denial will erase the fact that today you were the nail, and someone else was the hammer.

Most people react to being the nail by quitting whatever it is that they happen to be a nail in. That might be a karate, or jiu-jitsu class, it could be a sport, it might even be a class at school, a subject of interest, or even a relationship. 

To them being a nail is too much of many different emotions, like embarrassment, like failure, like they are inferior, like they are weak, like many different things that just makes their stomach churn.

What they fail to understand is that being a nail is the only way understand how to be a hammer.

As we begin to deal with what the hammer throws at us, we first begin to understand how to survive adversity, we begin to be toughened by the hammer, we have a chance to calm down in the face of it, and start to see when it is headed for us.

We start to be able to resist it’s force, we begin to find it’s patterns, to understand it’s movement, to know how the hammer does what it does.

Compared to the newer nails we hardly even look like a nail anymore, we certainly don’t act like one. We have been forged by the hammer, not driven away by it.

We are ready to become the hammer, to keep the new nails in check, and shape them the way we have been shaped.

We will teach them how to become a hammer by being a nail because we understand the process through our own experience, through our own perseverance, and through our own time as a nail.

Wherever you are in your journey remember it is a never ending cycle. Sometimes you are the hammer, sometimes you are the nail. Either way, just be glad they haven’t put you back in the tool box yet!

-Joshua Page

Moments in Time

Life is meant to be shared, more meaningful when it is. Sometimes it is for years, sometimes for just moments. 

The beautiful thing is no matter how brief or long these moments are, their impact is not mesured by how long they are.

The most brief moments, the most casual words, the slightest smile can make ripples that follow us our whole life, that can change the very flow of someone’s life.

Treasure your day to day interactions, make a point to give a nod, a pat on the back, a hello. Share more than just space with the people we met. Make a sincere connection, an honest moment, a true exchange of caring with no expectations or agendas. 

Don’t miss a chance to make a brief moment in time last forever…….

Test of Time

Everyone is always excited to make progress, get the promotion, to see themselves advancing.

Operating a martial arts academy this is evident every time belt testing or stripe reviews roll around. Everyone wants to know if they made it, if they are on the list, everyone wants to be testing…..and if they are not……they are bummed, some are let down…..and some are even mad!

We once have a student, who had not met his requirements to test, ask if he could be on the list, and after he was reminded he had some more work to do, screamed “but I deserve to test!!!”….and quit when we stuck to our guns.

The lesson I hope he learns, and that I hope all our students learn is that the test is not the test…..time is the ultimate test. 

On a long enough time line black belt will happen for anyone bold enough and persistent enough to keep coming to class….the test takes care of itself through daily effort and dedication. 

Can you put in the time, can you stay the path, can you be resilient to setbacks to disappoint, can you outlast your timeline and expectations? 

If the answer is yes, you might just be able to past the importance test, the test of time. 

Joshua Page,

Hickory Academy of Martial Arts