[ Quality ]

Quality: Indomitable Spirit

Indomitable spirit is one of the 20 qualities defined for beginning martial arts students. The following is an excerpt from Chapter 8  of the book.


I will do what I need to, even when I’m scared. I won’t let what other people say make me sad or dislike myself. I will stand up for myself and others.


  1. I continue striving, even when I am scared
  2. I stand up for others who are wrongfully treated
  3. I can start a project without knowing up front how to finish it because I’m confident of my success.
  4. I’m certain that I can develop into a black belt or anything else I want to be.
  5. I do not let friends pressure me to do things I don’t want to do.


Isabella is at school and sees many kids picking on the new boy, including someone she considered her friend.

She rushed forward. “Stop it,” she said firmly, as she pushed between the new boy and some boys throwing dirt on him.

“You better get out of the way, Catty Isabella, or you’ll lose your claws,” one girl taunted.

Her class knew that Isabella was in martial arts. Some even resented it, because Isabella’s confidence had soared. “You can’t fight us all!” Shouted one boy who threw dirt right in her face.

With her eyes filled with mud, and grit in her mouth, Isabella says firmly, “You’re all acting like animals. Grow up!”

The inevitable reply comes immediately from several in unison, “No, you grow up.”

Isabella stands her ground though some of the dirt has clods and gravel in it. She turns her back on the dirt throwers.

She spots her friend Susan, whom she caught taunting the boy. “What are you waiting for, Susan, go get help,” she yells to her. Susan comes to her senses and runs to get a teacher.

By the time Susan returns, the crowd had disappeared and only Isabella and the boy remained, both with dirt all over them. Isabella was checking to see if he was hurt.

As it turns out, Isabella has even more wounds than the boy. She has a nasty cut under her eye from a sharp rock. She’d never felt it since she was aflame with the spirit of righteousness.

The boy’s mom calls Isabella’s to tell her what happened and to thank Isabella for her bravery and refusal to quit. The boy, Johnathon, becomes friends with Isabella and even joins Isabella’s martial arts school. His parents reasoned that if that’s what Isabella developed from it, their son should benefit, too.

What’s Going On?

Throughout the situation, Isabella shows indomitable spirit in defense of another. She uses the strength of her self-confidence and her sense of righting a wrong.

In this situation, Isabella is reckless. She is pelted with dirt clods and receives a cut under her eye from a thrown rock.

She learns from the encounter and is likely to approach a future conflict differently. She observes that although her counter-taunting feels justified, it doesn’t improve the situation. She tries another tactic by appealing to Susan to get help, which works to disperse the attackers.

After the phone call, Isabella’s mom sits down with Isabella and they assess Isabella’s response, both the strengths and the possible improvements.

About Author

David Leasure

With over twenty-five years’ experience in martial arts, Dr. Leasure continues to practice and holds a second-degree black belt black belt in taekwondo. He started martial arts in wrestling and is a state champion. He continued in Shotokan karate and earned a second-degree black belt. He holds a Ph.D. in computer science.

For the last twenty-five years, Leasure has been a provost at multiple online universities and a scholar of learning science and practice. He has been honored with multiple awards for his teaching and leadership. He actively practices the qualities of learning and self-growth and credits their contribution to the quality of his life. He is a co-author with Daniel Apple and Wade Ellis of the book, The Professional’s Guide to Self-growth: A step-by-step process for developing your unlimited potential, published in 2018.

Dr. Leasure and his wife have been married over thirty years and raised 3 children. He loves teaching and helping others to reach their full potential. His vision is to positively impact the lives of over 10 million learners.

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