The Goal

The Goal

Saturday, 2 April 2016

Temet Nosce

In the film The Matrix* Keanu Reeves' character, Neo, visits The Oracle for enlightenment and is pointed to a sign above the door to her kitchen which states "Temet Nosce". She proceeds to explain that it's Latin and means "know thyself", before delivering a homily on the power of knowing what you are capable of.

If you want to achieve things in  pretty much any sphere you need to know what you are capable of. Partially in terms of raw talent, but more so in terms of a realistic assessment of how much time and effort you are willing to put into your sport / work / hobby.

Occasionally, I've heard shooters make wistful comments along the lines of "I wish I could shoot as well as X. How do they do it?" or ""What is X's secret?" or even "I'd do anything to shoot like X." I've never had the temerity to ask how much they train or what they have done to try and emulate their heroes, but I'd be interested to have heard their responses. I suspect, but could not prove, that many people might want to achieve this level of performance but haven't made the connection yet between their wants and the demands of bridging the gap.

That said, I hope that there are many people who have examined themselves in this way and have been honest enough with themselves to admit that they either do not want it enough to put in the required level of effort, or that they want other things more, and can live with enjoying their shooting at they level they compete. There is no shame in taking enjoyment in playing in a sport at which you know you will never excel.

On a personal note, I'm getting back into the swing of things and, while not entirely hitting all of my process goals in my training, I'm making progress. Those eagle-eyed amongst you who have spotted that I've put up a training plan and started to track my training online will know that the cardio is approaching fine, I'm just about shooting enough SCATT and I've got out on to the range a couple of times recently; however I'm not really getting to grips with the phys yet.

I'm making this effort on the training front because despite the fact that I live in NZ, I feel like I can still shoot at a high enough level win medals at Commonwealth Games level wherein I have unfinished business. After some fast talking with my employer, it's looking a lot like the Army Open, BCRC, Imperial and potentially the WRA Open are on the cards for me in 2016. I'm going to the lengths of putting it on my blog because having published my training plan, I'd better try and stick to it or I'm going to look like a bit of an arse. Despite what Master Yoda may have to say on the matter, fear can be a powerful motivator.

In my case, I know my motivation for training and capability for sticking to my plan; however this is something you will also need to discover about yourself. You do need to be realistic though and understand what you are willing to put in, in order to get out what you want to get out. There's no point believing you can achieve great things if you know that you're not going to put the hours in to achieve them.

* For all its being derivative (start with the anime film The Ghost in the Shell and the classic cyberpunk novel Neuromancer) it's still my seventh favourite film, sandwiched in between Start Wars: Return of the Jedi and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.


  1. There are those with the will to win and there are those with the will to prepare to win.

    1. That very phrase was in a draft of this post, but in the end I removed it as it wasn't quite what I was trying to express (although it's a good thought.)

  2. Sharing a (training) goal always makes it more likely that you will work your backside of to achieve it.