I first read Dr. Tae Yun Kim’s book, “Seven Steps to Inner Power” in 1990, about 2 years before I started training at Dr. Kim’s Jung Suwon Martial arts, where Dr. Kim is Great Grandmaster, founder, and one of just two or three 10th degree Tae Kwon Do Great Grandmaster’s in the world.
Back then, in 1990 I was newly married to my first husband. He had found Jung Suwon shortly after moving to the Bay Area after college because he’d wanted to train in Tae Kwon Do. The day he started training, he brought home a copy of Dr. Kim’s “Seven Steps to Inner Power”.
When I first read, “Seven Steps,” then I thought, wow, what Dr. Tae Yun Kim writes makes a lot of sense. But, that’s as much as I thought about it at the time. 2 years later it would be different.
Dr. Kims begins “Seven Steps to Inner Power,” with the short, but extremely profound, question – “Who Am I?”
In 1990, egotistically, I thought, I know my name, right? So of course I know who I am….
I was really, really wrong.
How could I possibly think I knew anything about my real self? I was 24 years old, just 2 years out of college, working at my first ‘real’ job, and just starting to realize that now that I was out of college I could now have interests and hobbies that didn’t involved all-consuming college homework.
What did I really want out of life?
I had no clue.
Two years later, my first husband and I separated, and in the sudden shock of the separation I took stock of my life.
I realized, I wasn’t happy with my life as it was then. My life as it was then, wasn’t working. I had to do something different.
I didn’t know what. But felt I had to do something different.
I did know that I wanted to be around positive people. I admired how friendly everyone was whom I’d met at Jung Suwon. They seemed to be genuinely happy, well adjusted, and focused on improving their lives. So I thought … me who had never done any sport.. that’s it – I am going to try training at Jung Suwon!
The 25 years since then have been amazing!
For sure, my life is still full of ups and downs – and forwards and backward periods. And I’ve been far from a great student – but I through my decision to train at Jung Suwon I gained something that for me has meant everything for 25 years – living with a purpose, living with determination, and being in an environment filled with people who share similar goals, dreams, and a positive philosophy towards living their lives.