One Weekend Only! Black Friday – Shop Small Saturday – Special Sunday – Cyber Monday
Here are the Specials: (Packages apply to Martial Arts, Fitness Classes, and Tabata). Anyone who makes a purchase from the following will be entered to WIN our cool new Camo Swirl Tanks (sizes S, M, L, XL) with our brand new hashtag #badasscourage and a box of Organogold Coffee.
Check out this Illustrator file of the shirts…it looks short, but is actually longer (about 3-4 inches below waist).
Call us at 831-458-0900 or get a hold of us through the Contact page.
As busy as this past Summer was, I held a Black Belt Test, and promoted Marcia Buenafe to 1st Degree Black Belt in our Martial Arts Program. Her test was completely incredible. She did so well. She worked on this for 5 + years. But what is 5 years, when you and your life are completely transformed. Her emotional reactions are amazing to say the least. Her new calm is impressive. Her self-confidence has soared! It is such a treat to see how much change a person can go through when s/he is willing to get there. Her dedication, perseverance, and commitment to her larger picture are what made the difference. This cannot ever be taken away from her. She can only add to it. Huge congratulations to Marcia Buenafe, a true Martial Arts Black Belt, living life her way.
Present at her test was my student from Spain, Black Belt Jose Maria Gomez. Training here, he was able to be on the Board for her test. Needless to say, he was completely impressed. He is such a shining example of what martial arts is all about. Respect, confidence, integrity, standing your ground, and knowing how to kick-butt if he had to. He stayed with a local family in Santa Cruz, and here is a short story the hosts, Shalom & Vito Victor, tell about Jose Maria Gomez:
“Jose Maria was a guest in our home in Santa Cruz, CA. for two weeks. He was here to work with Clara Minor to further his knowledge of Martial Arts; technique, mind set, discipline and fitness. From the beginning we witnessed his perseverance and his dedication to Clara whom he felt was the best teacher there was for him to continue his learning; although he had been an instructor in Spain for thirty years.
He spent his entire time here going between Minorsan and our home. Jose seemed to exemplify the mental qualities of the teaching, in the responsible way he behaved in our home. After a training he would rush back to our home to put down what he learned before he was to return to the studio. He was neat and clean, and always left in time to be present for training. He ate simply, a self discipline that was impressive, so as not to be uncomfortable for class. He was and is a devoted and passionate practitioner of the Art of Self Defense. He explained that the purpose of the teaching was to learn to live the techniques that foster non-aggressive interactions with others. If he returns to Santa Cruz for further teachings we would feel happy to host him again.”
—Shalom and Vito Victor
Some of our members had a chance to meet Chema (Jose Maria). If you did not, he will be returning. I always love meeting people whose homes are in other countries, and then getting to know them and their perspective on life, living, and happiness. They have so much to teach us and share with us, and vice versa.
I cannot overemphasize how truly transformative our Martial Arts Program has been for many individuals. There is nothing like it on the planet. Learning to kick-butt, and then using your own spiritual guidance in how/when you apply it, is a powerful skill and a true gift to give yourself. You are in control of your own life, and there is nothing better, nor more powerful, than that.
Clara E Minor is the Master Instructor/Trainer for MINORSAN Self-Defense & Fitness in Santa Cruz, CA. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org
‘Once in a Blue Moon’ just happened. Because this ‘blue moon’ happens every few years only (as it did a few weeks ago), when things in our lives happen that seem to come out of nowhere, were unexpected, or seem very random, and it seems like it will not happen again for a very long time, we refer to these events, as ‘once in a blue moon.’ These can be very good things or very difficult things.
High energy has been going full throttle. Things are moving fast. Lots of ways to go/be/do/think/react. I knew we would be faced with challenges at this particular time, and we certainly have been here in Santa Cruz.
Yes, these past few weeks have been brim full of challenges. Taking on a challenge, at least for me, is to jump in with both feet. Fully commit to finding the answer, moving in a different direction, adapting to what is in front of me. This is a principle I teach to my martial arts students. The ability to adapt is critical for their safety. I apply it in my own life too. A few weeks ago I was presented with a challenge that I have never taken on, ever (among everything else what was going on).
I was asked two days before an event to ‘officiate/present/lead’ this event. It was not a huge event. It was an emotional event.
I was honored to take this on. The event happened to be a memorial service for one of my long-ago martial arts students. His name is Randy “Randawg” Clifford. He left us at a young 62.
During the time he studied at my martial arts studio, I got to know him and his family. His joy for life, his joking, his laughter, his smile every time he walked in, were infectious. And I had to laugh with the perfectionism, as our birthdays are in September, and one day apart. I know this one very well (perfectionism, also referred to often as ‘anal retentive’).
He was meticulous in his martial arts movement, his appearance, every job he did with his roofing company (Clifford Roofing & Construction), teaching his sons how to properly wash a vehicle, keeping both his white cadillac and white Harley in meticulous condition, and the perfection of his signature BBQ sauce (Uncle Randawg’s BBQ Sauce, available locally in specialty shops).
These qualities certainly set him apart. His wife of 20 years, Veronica Clifford, his family, friends, and the Santa Cruz community will certainly miss Randy “Randawg” Clifford.
The following was presented at his memorial service.
Randall Leonard Clifford~
We are here today to celebrate the life and spirit of Randy “Randawg” Clifford, loving husband, father, grandfather and friend.
Born in Gardena, CA, Sept 21, 1952, to Patricia and Don Clifford, he passed away July 6, 2015.
He spent his early years in Southern California, working with his Uncle H.T., as a young roofer at age 14. He then attended Riverside High School, and from there was drafted into the U.S. Army, where he spent two years during the Viet Nam war. He continued in the Army Reserves for another four years.
After he was discharged from the Army, he returned to Riverside and opened his own business, Clifford Roofing & Construction. He taught his sons Lance Clifford and Ryan Clifford the trade, as well as Lorenzo Rios. To this day, Lorenzo Rios is still at it, roofing local homes in the Santa Cruz community.
Randy met his wife of 20 years, Veronica Clifford, on a blind date. Both had been reluctant to commit to this blind date, and the fourth attempt by their friends would change the rest of their lives. It was truly love at first site. That night he took her to Castagnola’s on the Santa Cruz Municipal Wharf. There he got down on one knee, sang Elvis Presley songs to her, some blues too, and, of course, embarrassed her to no end. She loved it. And she knew she had found the true love of her life.
While at their attorney’s office taking care of some legal papers, he got down on one knee, and began to propose. The attorney excused himself, however, Veronica insisted he stay, as he was already witness to this event. Randy continued, on one knee, with his proposal, sang another Elvis Presley song, then stood up, arms uplifted and simply stated, “Ta Da!” and kissed her. She said yes. This was simply Randy’s style.
They were married on Randy’s birthday, September 21, at their beautiful home in Santa Cruz. Together, they brought five children into their marriage; Randy’s two sons, Lance and Ryan, and Veronica’s three children, Katrina, Vanessa, and Patrick. Over time they would have nine grandchildren that brought so much joy to them both.
Randy was an “adventurer.” He loved to scuba dive. He and Veronica were blessed to have visited the Bahamas, Cancun, and Cozumel; to dive in Cortez and explore shipwrecks. They went diving with sharks without the cages! (The ‘crazy adventurer’ in them both.)
He also loved motor cycle riding, and when mounted on their Harley, they looked like celebrities. He took pride in his appearance, and it did not matter if he was working, or going out to a function…he was always classy! His bike was just as classy. He kept it meticulously clean.
They also found joy in the simple things; picnics they shared in a cove near their home, bbq’s in their backyard, and simple family gatherings. They included their grandchildren when ever they could, and the picnics and grilling created incredible time for them all.
Randy was very successful with his roofing company, until he had an accident while on the job, which would change everything. The business began to suffer, as Randy had to go through many surgeries to repair his broken bones. The weeks turned into months. They had to think of something to do to remedy the situation while he healed.
Veronica and Randy were a team. Together they collaborated on a new venture: they created and marketed “Uncle Randawg’s BBQ Sauce.” Randy had a love of cooking, and he was influenced greatly by his grandmother. Early in life he began making his own BBQ sauce. He would make dishes for family and friends and they always urged him to sell it. This did not happen until he and Veronica put their heads together and decided that they would give the BBQ sauce a go. Veronica had the skills and expertise to get the product to market, including researching companies who could bottle and ship it.
They went to many events promoting the product that Randy had created. At the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim CA, they entered the BBQ sauce, and they won the 1st place trophy and 3rd place ribbon, in two different categories. In the process, they met many celebrities, including Tiger Woods’ father, as he purchased their BBQ sauce too.
When they showed at the Carlton-Ritz in Half Moon Bay, they met Jerry Rice, had a photo-op with him, and met many of the 49er cheerleaders. Everyone seemed to love their BBQ sauce.
Randy also loved to hunt and fish. In his teen years, every year he would make trips with his Uncle H.T. and his cousin Greg Perry, to either Utah or Alaska. He always took his beloved dogs, Max and Peetie, and more recently, his dog Sugar.
He loved Uncle H.T. and Aunt Marge, from whom he learned many of the values for his life. Uncle H.T. was a perfectionist in is trade and taught many in the family, including Randy, the right way to roof. The ‘trainees’ would need to stay on the ground (sometimes right in the driveway), pounding nails in boards for many hours before being allowed to get on a roof. They had to pass Uncle H.T.’s standards—then they would be ready to ‘load’ the roofs, carrying bundles of shingles up the ladders to the roof—it is the way it was done in that period of time.
Randy was a very thoughtful man and would do the little things for people that made them know they were special. Walks with Veronica along the pier, meeting up with their friends, sending gifts to Uncle H.T. and cousin Greg (and Greg’s two kids, Shelly and Tootie), and showing up in Utah “just because.” He continued his friendship with his long-time friend, Leon. With Randy it was ‘friends forever.’
Many of us here today have felt the love, generosity and compassion that Randy shared with us. He was loved by many and will be greatly missed. RIP “Randawg.”
It was truly an honor to take on this challenge for this martial arts student, Randy “Randawg” Clifford. Rest in Eternal Peace Randy.
Clara E Minor is a Martial Arts Master Trainer and and Fitness Instructor in Santa Cruz, CA. She recently celebrated her 30-year anniversary with a martial arts business in Santa Cruz. You can contact her through her website at www.minorsan.com
How often have you had someone do or say something to you, and you felt ‘offended’ (to use a word that is now so commonplace, it is actually used as an excuse for not dealing with our inner game.)
And what if now you feel different about that person because of what they said or did? This often happens when someone you trust, breaks trust. Irresponsibility breaks trust. Ignoring a commitment breaks trust. Betrayal breaks trust.
It happens all the time to many people. Someone you ‘thought’ was a friend betrays you. What happens to the relationship? It usually ends…sometimes after a yelling match, and sometimes through utter silence.
No further communication happens between the parties involved. No one knows what to say, or one person feels the other one should say something first, as that person was the ‘offender.’ And the other person just ‘can’t’ say anything because they either lack the tools to know what or how to say anything, or they don’t believe they are at fault. Or the same issue has come up over and over again, and one party is just tired of making full out attempts to help fix it, with no action, commitment, or effort from the other party.
What if you are the one who has committed the ‘offense.’ You might not even know you committed it. The other person did not even offer up that you did this or that. And they avoid you. And you don’t know why. Or if they did let you know what you said or did, they are not interested in listening to you. They have made their mind up that you are wrong, and there is no fixing it. What can you do? Sometimes nothing more. We call it ‘letting go.’
If apologizing is in order, without the entire story laid out, and all the pieces put on the table, the puzzle cannot come together for a complete picture of what happened. Therefore, it makes it hard for someone to apologize. And, most often, an apology is not enough anyway.
So, first communication has to happen. Then the next step in ‘the fix’ will become clearer. Then those who feel they need to hold themselves accountable (and most likely all parties will feel this way when all the puzzle pieces are laid out on the table), can hold themselves in their new truth—which probably wasn’t new at all, but now is acknowledged.
When the issue is truly lack of communication, nothing will move. People don’t suddenly wake up one morning and say, “Gee, I think I’ll call XYZ and just say let’s call it ‘water under the bridge,’ and let’s move on.” If this does happen, it is most often because one party is an enabler, and does not know how else to ‘make it all go away,’ except by saying “Oh, it’s really not that bad. Let’s just forget about it and move on.” This person doesn’t know how, or doesn’t want, to deal with the ‘ugly.’ The uncomfortable. The unknowing.
“Water under the bridge” is only truly possible after there has been some form of communication about the issue. When a situation takes place, and no one says anything, and both parties end up not talking to each other, ever, again, I’d be willing to bet this won’t happen.
So now, what if it’s you who did the offense? Are you comfortable with apologizing? Remember, just an apology does not often work very well. What else is there?
You have to be accountable. You have to take full responsibility for what you said or did, and what was created because you waited so long to say anything. This is uncomfortable. Most people just don’t want to go there. How do you do this? Sum up your courage (more about this next week). Yep, you need courage.
First you need to acknowledge what you said or did. This internal dialogue will help you in becoming a stronger person. It doesn’t feel good. Finding comfort in this process is not easy. And like anything else, when you do it over and over, it becomes easier and easier. And in there lies your newfound strength.
You must take full responsibility and stop using the words “well, it was because of xyz (extenuating circumstance).” Whenever you attempt to add an element of “why,” you are deflecting that you were truly responsible for making a decision that now turns out was detrimental to your relationship. You are still not holding yourself in full responsibility. So, muster up your courage and do this:
Step 1: Acknowledge your responsibility fully, no one, or no thing, to blame. When you take full responsibility that you did make a decision all of your own accord, you will now get the other party’s attention. It helps them get out of defensive mode. Their body often begins to relax.
Step 2: Acknowledge that your words and/or actions were detrimental to the other party, and how they affected the other party. And how it must have made them feel. And that you understand her/his reactions to your original actions/words.
Step 3: Now you offer the apology while looking at them straight in their eyes.
Step 4: Tell them what you will be doing to be sure it never happens again. (training, mentoring, counseling, therapy, etc.)
Step 5: Offer the apology again.
Then wait for the response. Here is where they might ask you why. Great time to answer (without passing the blame).
While these steps seem simple, they can still be very hard to do. Let yourself feel the ‘uncomfort’ of the process, and do it anyway. When you have completed it, a huge weight will be lifted, you will physically feel lighter, your head will feel clear, your heart can breathe better, and you will have helped mend your relationship. Now you can move on and upward. You will find comfort in your apology. Tremendous comfort.
Clara E Minor is Master Instructor/Trainer at MINORSAN Self-Defense & Fitness. She works with people who have a hard time standing up for themselves and don’t feel very good about their bodies. She helps them feel great in their bodies, feel fantastic about their bodies, and live their lives in fearlessness. You can reach her via the website contact page.
“You can’t always beat everyone with your mind, but you certainly can lose to everybody with your mind.” — Bill Kennedy
It’s another awesome quote I just heard recently. I was talking to Bill, a long-time member of MINORSAN Self-Defense & Fitness (for at least 16 years), just after KickAeroBix™ class the other day. Bill was in our Martial Arts Program years ago.
We were discussing the fight at the Staples Center last weekend, between Rhonda Rousey (Venice, CA) and Cat Zingano (Colorado), in which Rousey locked up Zingano with an arm bar (Rousey being trained in Judo primarily) in the first 14 seconds of the fight, and won by submission. They weren’t quite fighting for life, but more fighting to win (almost synonymous). They certainly were using the Art of Mind.
Bill watched the fight as it was happening. He said you could hear people in the audience, close to the microphones, making statements about the fight being over already (and it had not even begun).
It was all Rousey’s look, her intention, and her commitment to win this fight. She was 100% mentally prepared. She was physically primed (that’s the easy part). The hard part is the mental state of mind. Both fighters were at 0 losses (zero).
Several people in the audience who were up close made the comments about the fight being over already. Bill could also see her face on TV. She was totally IN. Her eyes did not leave Zingano’s. Full 100% commitment.
And then Bill made his comment quoted above. The power of our thinking and intentions cannot be overemphasized. What you think about, what you imagine, what you desire, and continue to focus on, you will achieve.
Look at our professional sporting events (football, baseball, basketball, soccer, hockey, etc). Watching these teams win/lose is always a lesson in the power of the mind. It becomes very clear when an entire team loses the mental confidence needed to win. Sometimes all it takes is one player doing one awesome move, and the confidence comes back.
Games are 90% mental, 10% physical skills. The same with fights. The same with life. You truly can win with your mind, and your mind can also cause you to lose. If your thinking isn’t in the right place, you can lose to everyone, including yourself.
So when your focus is going the other way, what will you achieve? Exactly that which you are thinking. It does not matter if it is positive, negative, adverse, happy, joy-filled, challenging, sad, overwhelming, whatever. That is what will manifest in your life. And then some people will easily reinforce it with thoughts such as ‘See, that always happens to me.’ Or, ‘I told you that would happen.’ Or, ‘I knew I wouldn’t be able to do it.’
And then the ‘give up’ part happens. We think it is not possible because, well, ‘see what happened in the past?’ ‘That didn’t work, so I won’t try it again.’ And why ‘try’ anyway?
‘Try’ is a non-committed attempt at action. It’s easy to ‘try’ to do anything. It is a way out…one foot out the door already, before you have even begun. Trying is a half-xxsed attempt…at anything.
Rhonda Rousey did not ‘try’ to win that fight. She did not ‘try’ to get Zingano into a submission. She did not ‘try’ the arm bar. She just did it. Her mind was already made up. Do you think Cat Zingano is going to ‘try’ to win her next fight? If she does, she will surely lose again. She knows she needs to up her mental game, each fight, every time. To say Zingano was disappointed is putting it mildly. Very mildly.
So next time you are thinking about ‘trying’ something, stop and check in. What are you really saying to yourself? How are you still programming your mind? If you truly want a change to happen, stop ‘trying,’ stop giving yourself an ‘out,’ stop doubting yourself, stop doing the same thing over and over. Stop listening to others. Stop letting others overpower you.
Start thinking in the ‘yes.’ Start to program yourself with everything you have, to be successful. Start to ‘yes yourself,’ every day. In fact, make it a goal for one week only. Say yes to yourself, your health, your well-being, your body, your life, every day, in every decision you make. Even say ‘yes’ in the face of your opponents. On a daily basis, you know who they are. No matter what they say to you, say ‘yes’ to what will make your life better. Be in 100%. Fight for your right to live exactly how you want to live. Do it for a week. How will your week be different?
It could be the start of something BIG…huge.
Clara E Minor is the Owner and Master Instructor/Trainer of MINORSAN Self-Defense & Fitness. She teaches and continues to develop her Martial Arts Program, is continually developing her Self-Defense Program, offers classes and a bootcamp for fitness & health-inspired people, and loves to teach people to kick butt in their lives, and go BIG.