When one has made the decision to kill a person, even if it will very difficult to succeed by advancing straight ahead, it will not do to think about going at it in a long roundabout way. One’s heart may slacken, he may miss his chance, and by and large there will be no success. The Way of the Samurai is one of immediacy, and it is best to dash in headlong.
Obviously I’m not trying to encourage you to kill anyone, or do so the second you feel so inclined. The ‘person’ being killed in the above passage is a metaphor for an opportunity. It’s something, anything that you really want that is passing by you. It could be a promotion or the heart of another person. It could mean figuring out how to use GarageBand to record your first album or figuring out how to sell your old albums on ebay. When you have a passion to do something…go after it. Do it now. And get it.
When I saw that first Miyamoto Musashi documentary, I was intrigued. When I read the Book of Five Rings, I started thinking about doing something with the Way. When I identified exactly what it was, that I wanted to do Urban Samurai, I reserved the domain name. And started putting together the site. The second I had everything together, I started practicing and writing. If I had waited, talked about it with other people, hemmed and hawed, or just simply contemplated it for too long, my drive would have waned. And it would have never gotten done. That initial burst carried me through.
When you have that fire in your belly, use it. Attack. Go for the kill. Get the kill.
For anyone who has started to put together a children’s toy, then stopped…you will know that once that initial fire is gone…that toy will sit there ½ put together until the kids outgrow it. If anyone has started and stopped college, started and stopped a novel…anything…you will know that once initial fire is put out…the chances of finishing your mission decrease significantly. And the percentages only go down from there.
A killshot is the bullet that knocks down the animal. That gets the job done. And when that opportunity is in your sights, you must fire.
But, and this is something I’ve referenced repeatedly throughout this short time, you need to be ready. Don’t blame missed opportunities on anyone but yourself. In order to knock down the big one, you need to have a big gun, a big bullet, and be in the right spot waiting.
In college, I was mostly a substandard student. With all the beer and fun to be had, I never felt like the academic part was all that necessary. One day, we had an Economics exam, and I decided to really study. So I crammed for two days, and still did poorly. And I was upset about it…but I had no right to be. How did I expect to do well? The other students in the class had probably been paying attention all year and crammed for those same two days, if not more. What I thought at the time was a killshot, meaning I was going to knock that exam down by my studying…was just a weakly fired bullet, or worse, one thrown with my arm. A bullet thrown by even the strongest person isn’t piercing the skin, let alone knocking anything down.
If you don’t have the skill set, it doesn’t matter if you make your mind up about getting something and you rush in headlong. You will not succeed by just lunging at opportunities that are way out of your current reach.
If you are positioned within the marketplace, with the right contacts and the right experience, when a huge career making opportunity opens up, your killshot won’t miss completely or softly bounce off the target. It will find and reach the heart and drop it. That job is yours to do whatever you want with it.
Work hard every day towards achieving the things you want. And when the chance comes up, your killshot will be just that.