Mental Toughness: How Boxing Improved My Killer Instinct
I started my boxing training about a year ago. About 6 months to this date, I've been very serious about it. Besides the physical benefits, I noticed that I developed mental toughness that I never had before. It was a good feeling. I developed an aura. I've always had an alpha male quality that developed right after high school. It was clear but lately, it's been defined or rather, refined. I would best describe this mental development as a killer instinct that can only be recognized by other alphas.
I've always had a knack for punching. It was realized late in my life when a close friend invited our inner circle to his basement to pound his heavy bag. I thought, "hell yeah!" I quickly realized that I had some aggression that was easily relieved by some hard body shots and hooks. You know what? It felt really good. It was like every punch I gave the bag released stress. I loved it. That hot summer afternoon, my knuckles were sore and swollen. I was hurt, but it felt good. This was the beginning of what now is a passion.
Late that summer and early fall, I purchased some gloves so I could spar with my brother and friends. It was fun. We recorded ourselves sparring. I wanted to keep a record of how much we improved. At first, it was a trial thing. Deep down, I knew I wanted to get serious with boxing but like most things, I needed friends to support my new hobby.
What started as a big group, ended with 2. After I introduced some of my friends into boxing and we started sparring, only 1 friend survived. We had the passion for it and we continue to spar regularly to this day. Boxing and sparring is not for everyone. There's lots of injuries involved but that comes with the territory. Most people, including myself, have the fear of getting hit. It was something I got over quickly. Some people just simply can't overcome this fear. No one wants to get punched but I found a way around it. I mentally prepared myself to get hit and hurt. When you expect to get hurt, you are ready when it happens. This mental toughness manifested into physical toughness. I trained myself hard to condition myself to the pain I might receive. My killer instinct rose like mercury in June.
Modesty and It's Applications
As my killer instinct increased, so did my skill. I live in a rough neighborhood. In fact, someone was murdered in my basement a few weeks ago. I want to defend myself if ever I need to. If my knife can't save my life, I hope my fists can. As a result of my improvement, I had to keep my ego in check. Being publicly humble is very important. I would much rather be underestimated than overestimated. I would get caught shadow boxing everywhere including work. Co-workers would make jokes all the time. I would get corny lines like, "Who's winning you or the air?" and "That's some competition right there." I didn't mind. After a while people would ask me what I was training for. I would make light of the situation or say, "Just for fitness, nothing serious." My plan worked. It's important not to show your strengths to people "above" you. In a working environment, instead of being impressed, people tend to feel threatened. You must appear weaker and lesser than those around.
Beyond my humble exterior, I knew deep down how good I was. Not being cocky, but if you knew you were better than others at something, you'd feel like the man too. There's nothing wrong with being cocky in your mind and modest outside. It's a realization of the truth. Much like how the sky is blue, I am better than most people. The people I used to think were tough were really wuss. As my presence grew, I noticed myself looking at all without fear. I would walk down the street not afraid to look anyone in the eye. Those that felt my strength reflect respect with a nod and I return in acknowledgement. My confidence increased and my killer instinct realized. As real recognizes real, my respect was given to those that had the same qualities I have. I would pay the quiet but strong while looking down on the weak and loud.
How Boxing Revealed My Killer Instinct
Boxing is not for everyone. Most people just can't get over the mental hurdle of getting hit. Some people can but they just cannot punch no matter how much they practice. Some people are born natural punchers. Boxing has helped me achieve a state of physical and mental health I never thought I would see.
There's something to be said when sparring someone. It's intimate. Not in a sexual way but undoubtedly still personal. When you exchange punches with someone, you feel their strengths. You feel their weaknesses. Likewise, they feel your powers and vulnerabilities. It's a primal ritual of competition at it's rawest. When we come out of hard sparring, it results in a mutual respect for each other. We tested ourselves physically and mentally. We touched gloves. I've always had it in me. Boxing help me see. I suppose I have been misleading you. After writing this article, I realized a more appropriate title would've been, "How Boxing Revealed My Killer Instinct." Thanks for reading. Fight hard and train hard.
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