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Warrior Spirit Circle


Week Two: Discovering Your Unique Character Strengths

Knowing our inner strengths is a key part of building confidence, self-esteem and resilience. The great thing about strengths is you can build and create new character strengths. Practicing our strengths often, will make us stronger and get us closer to knowing ourselves better. 

What is a character strength?

A strength is an activity that makes you feel strong on the inside. It is something that energizes you. 

A strength is not just something that you are good at. That’s a skill. 

A strength has 3 components to it:

  1. We are good at it 
  2. We feel great doing it
  3. We want to do it

3 Ways to Discover Your Strengths:

  1. Try new things - but don’t quit after the first time you try it. You really won’t know if it’s a strength of yours if you quit after your first attempt. Trying something once is an experience, give it some time to hone your skills so you can then really see if it can develop into one of your strengths. Remember no one builds a muscle by just going to the gym once. 
  2. Look at the things you love to do. Perhaps you love video games, awesome! So ask yourself, what do you love about playing them? For instance, if you enjoy playing Sonic, a racing style of video game, then you could be someone who has a character strength of perseverance. Take a moment and reflect on where else in your life do you have a lot of perseverance? 
  3. Acknowledge the feelings you are having. In situations that bring you joy and inner satisfaction, consider the feelings you are having.  Dig in and reflect on what is it about that experience made you feel the way you did?  

See the Wheel of 24 Character Strengths below and find what strengths ignites positive feelings around it.  


Final Thoughts:

We are all unique with our own set of strengths, that is what makes up our own individual person. There is no right or wrong to our strengths, and we can choose what they are. 

Maybe you are strong at being FAIR, but you need a bit of support to be more CURIOUS. 

Strengths are something we take with us during our lifetime and we can choose what strengths we want for our life right now. 

Watch here for more about our unique Character Strengths.

By Kohai Dianne Hadad

3rd Degree Black Belt, Renge Dojo

Certified Professional Coach, SHINE, Family Wellness Club

SHINE Family Wellness Club creates a space for all members of the family to interconnect, grow and share with like-minded spirited people seeking to elevate the family’s consciousness, build confidence and resilience so they can enjoy a harmonious and vibrant life journey together. 

Kids/Juniors and teen workshops, parent group coaching, and one-on-one coaching available. Want to learn more, book a 30 minute complimentary discover call now at 647-203-4882 or reach out at

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The concept in Budo is to stay out of trouble whenever possible.

The best form of self-defence is not to be there in the first place. If that is not possible there is a Chinese dictum – “we beg and we plead not to fight and then we strike!” Although we also profess “karate ni sente nashi,” meaning “there is no first attack in karate,” O’Sensei Kim pointed out that it doesn’t mean you have to wait for the person to hit you. The fight started when they made their intent clear. So our first strategy is to have the correct state of mind, “ai uchi,” meaning “we are ready to die if we must and to take the assailant with us.” The assailant should perceive that this encounter is going to be a battle of life and death and we trust that we will both choose life.


Responding to the opponent's attack – a counter.


The Japanese character for “sen” can also be read as “saki.” It means “before or ahead” but in the terms “go no sen,” “sen no sen” and “sen sen no sen,” it is an abbreviation of sorts for the word “sente,” meaning initiative or lead. The “te” in sente means hand, so sente directly translates as “beforehand.” In budo, sente refers to an attack or the initiative to attack. As O’Sensei Kim puts it – beat the opponent to the punch.


Go no sen (post-initiative) is a concept in which a combatant seizes the initiative in a fight after the opponent has already started an attack. In other words, once the opponent starts to attack, the defending combatant performs their technique. The go no sen technique can take various forms, since it depends on the use of the energy and momentum of the attacker. Go means “after.” We move in harmony with the attacker, but it is the attacker that is taking the initiative in the attack and we are mirroring his or her movements. In O’Sensei Kim’s words: “When you know how an opponent fights, you know when to move in on him, or if you're very skillful you know when he's thinking (body language) and you can move in ahead of him. Ahead not only of his action but ahead of his thought.”

Go no sen involves blocking any attack strongly and then launching a counter attack, also known as “osi waza.” In the case of a jodan oi zuki attack, the defender could shift back into zenkutsu dachi and execute a strong jodan age uke, and then deliver a gyaku zuki as a counter attack. A chudan oi zuki could be responded to by a chudan soto uke and a gyaku zuki. Again, after the counter, it is important to hold zanshin and then shift out of range and back into kamae.

Go no sen is not just a counter-attack, but also a mental state, a level of concentration assumed during combat. It is more correct to say that it is a harmonization with the very movement of attack, not just defense. Go no sen can also be seen as part of a philosophical and moral code, emphasized when one considers the term “DO” (道, ) or “Way,” meaning that the karateka should never take the initiative in an eventual and inevitable confrontation. As stated earlier, this is also “karate ni sente nashi.”