Do you have battle scars? It does not necessarily have to be physical ones. Do you ever think about removing them or do you see them as trophies you earn if you work hard?

When some people see a scar as an imperfection on your skin, there could be an amazing story behind that. Trophies come in a variety of forms. And they can be anything from medals and status to scars on your body.

So, what scars do you have? And what amazing stories are behind them?

Overview & Episode Content

  • Work Hard to Wake Up Your Inner Warrior
  • How to Work Hard and be Accountable toward Your Goals
  • You Work Hard to Earn Your Trophies
  • Scars are Trophies You had to Work Hard for.
  • Determination to Work Hard Yields Great Results

Work Hard to Wake Up Your Inner Warrior

Work Hard to Wake Up Your Inner Warrior

I started practicing Jiu-Jitsu in 2019. And I have talked about this in other episodes. At that time, I needed a 90-day target and that was the whole idea behind starting Jiu-Jitsu. 

As part of the Wake Up Warrior community, I was taking part in the Kings’ 90-Day Challenge. It is the way that they do things in the Wake Up Warrior. So, every 90 days you create a target for your body, spirituality, business, or for your family. And the target for the challenge has to be something that you are going to do with the family. I chose something that has to work hard for and I still do today.

Now, if you sign up for an Ironman or for a Jiu-Jitsu tournament — something where you’ve paid money — you are more motivated to actually do it. Your goals become much harder to set aside.

More so when it is something that you truly want to do. At the time, that was my body goal. It was interesting because I had always wanted to do Jiu-Jitsu. However, there were two things stopping me. 

One, I wasn’t sure about rolling with the opposite sex. I always felt uncomfortable. It was just something that was kind of odd to me. But I definitely got over that. The cool thing about my Warrior Brothers is that they were really supportive especially with Jiu-Jitsu. It is such a great equalizer of martial arts. You are helping them if they were ever in a really bad situation because at least they have some sort of self-defense.

And two, I just did not believe that I would be that good. I thought I would not even be able to compete.

How to be Accountable Toward Your Goals

How to be Accountable Toward Your Goals

I was not in the greatest shape at that time. I was about 215 pounds going on 220. And it did not seem like it was going to be in the cards. However, the really interesting thing was that I did it anyway. I did my first tournament about two months later.

So, I called the gym. I was looking at different gyms but they were only open in the evenings. Being an entrepreneur, I wanted to go to the gym anytime. I did not want to go just in the evenings. I wanted to be able to go whenever I wanted. 

I searched on Google and I found one. Now, the gym says that they do open at 8 o’clock in the morning but I’m guessing Google got it wrong because, in fact, they only opened at 8 o’clock in the morning on Saturdays. Anyway, it’s Fresno Ultimate Martial Arts and they called me back. 

I said, “I really want to do a Jiu-Jitsu tournament. It was part of my business goals. I need to accomplish it in about two months.” 

And then, he’s like, “Oh, Whoa. Yeah. I think we could get you ready by then. That’ll be really tough but you’re gonna have to really work hard at it. But no problem. We’ll try and make it happen.”

So, I went over there, signed up, and then realized that it was Tuesdays and Thursdays in the evening. And I’m like, “WHAT?!”

But on Saturdays, you can roll at around 7:30 in the morning. It ended up being a really cool thing because the community and the instructor were just so welcoming and awesome. Everyone was so positive.

You Work Hard to Earn Your Trophies

You Work Hard to Earn Your Trophies

In fact, I had my first Jiu-Jitsu tournament in April 2019 and ended up getting third place in No-Gi. And that was my first trophy.

I was blown away! For a while, nobody was doing much in the way of tournaments. Later, the next tournament had six competitors. Everyone got medals, which was awesome.

Seeing how it went from zero to five people competing is amazing. Now, I will be doing another tournament in April with more participants for the tournament over here in Central California. I might even do one down in Southern California a few weeks after.

That was trophy number one. Trophy number two was not exactly what I expected. Trophy number two is my right ear becoming a cauliflower ear. 

So, I went for a full year doing Jiu-Jitsu and nothing like that happened at all. I don’t even know when or how it happened. My ear just started to swell up and it has been this way for about two weeks now.

Then, I got people asking, “Hey, are you gonna drain it?”

It was very annoying. However, I actually like it. It is definitely not aesthetically pleasing, true. But it is a trophy that took me a year to get. Think about it. This is something that would not have been here, had I not done Jiu-Jitsu. 

Now, you might disagree and wonder why I would want this as a trophy. Honestly, I don’t quite know why. I do know that it does not happen quite often. As I said, it took a year to get this and I had to work hard through tournaments and a lot of learning. If it stays, it stays. If it goes, it goes.

Scars are Trophies You had to Work Hard for

Scars are Trophies You had to Work Hard for

I have scars all over my body from different events throughout my life. Each scar has a story — both physical and emotional scars. There are things that I do without even knowing also have a whole reason and story behind them.

Now, I do not want to let go of these scars because they give me power. What I mean by that is, my scars give me powerful stories that I want to share.

I want my kids to look at my ear and wonder, “Hey, Dad! How did you get that ear?”

I had to work hard to get this thing and I want to tell them the whole story behind it. The trophies that you have earned whether it’s a scar, a literal trophy, or a simple “congratulations” is a trophy of hard work that only you truly know the value of. And you can communicate that to the others. You never know who may be inspired by your story.

So, what scars do you have? What trophies do you have? And more importantly, what are the stories around your trophies? I challenge you this week to at least document or share a story just like this with somebody.

Determination to Work Hard Yields Great Results

Determination to Work Hard Yields Great Results

Before, I was never good at telling stories. In fact, I am still getting better at stories. It was only about two years ago that I learned a really good structure for telling stories. This has really helped me to be able to do podcasts like this. I learned to share in a way that is cohesive. 

And the structure that enabled me to share effectively goes: “What, Why, Lesson, & Apply.” I learned this from Garrett J White from Wake Up Warrior. What, Why, Lesson, & Apply.

To explain that further, what do you want to talk about? Just like today, it was on trophies and the story behind my cauliflower ear and how these are trophies.

Why are these things important? What is the lesson that this story is trying to explain? And then, how do you apply it in your life? Hence, the challenge to actually document or share that trophy this week. What, Why, Lesson, & Apply. It is very powerful.

Okay. So what trophy are you going to share? What scars are you gonna share that only you know and only you have learned? 

For me, the scars that I have are what brought to where it is right now. It is why I can work in five minutes and have a process be created and boom it’s done. That is why I’m able to have wonderful staff members that work hard and have an amazing culture.


Trophies come in so many forms. What’s the whole purpose of this? Why is this so important? 

Well, it is important because you have so many scars in your life, business, and family. You have things that you had to work hard for. You have trophies that have huge stories around them. It is the conventional type of people who say “Don’t forget about your experiences.” Yet they are the same people who tell you to get rid of a battle scar because it looks ugly.

A scar is viewed as a blemish on your body and soul but there are things in that scar that are priceless. There are things in that trophy that nobody, except you and God, knows.

Nobody, except you and God, knows. There’s a thing in the Bible where it says that God will give you a stone where something is written that only you and God know. Out of all the billions of people and quadrillions of angels and whatever else is out there, only you and God know. 

And guess what? That’s the same thing as the trophies that you have won.

Resources and Links

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Visit as well. This is Dean Soto and I will see you, my friends, in the next Freedom In Five Minutes podcast episode.

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