Sometimes, you’ve got to look outside your immediate space to recognise opportunities that speak to you, so that you could learn something new.  This could be a new skill, a new idea, or even something new or hidden within yourself.  It all starts with the curiosity to try something different.

Outside the realm of martial arts, I’m an innovation and creativity scholar.

What does that mean?

It means that I’m forever curious about how new ideas are generated, testing these, and learning from the experience.  I read a lot and look for ways to apply what I know in ways that are attuned to how I am as a person. 

There’s a consistent curiosity to try something different.

Being in isolation has led me to stumble upon the glory that is social media filters.

You know the ones – where it changes your appearance or background in some funny or interesting way.

“Sabrina, why are you drawn to this?  What’s this got to do with training?”  You may ask.

Well…it has everything to do with training, and everything to do with ‘being’.

I’ve been on a personal development journey for over a decade now  – trying to uncover my strengths, define my values, and ultimately, what makes me, me.  This is important in order for me to understand what I can give to the world and feel fulfilled. 

“And for training?”

We’re told the physical side of training is only one dimension.  The others sides are mental and spiritual. 

Personally, I don’t believe there’s any set way to develop these.  In fact, I welcome the opportunity to explore anything that instinctively appeals to me.  That’s where these social media filters come in – cartoon character social media filters, to be exact.

What was a general browse during a time of procrastination immediately appealed to something deeper within me.  It’s not really to just look silly – though of course, it does make me laugh and I hope you find it fun too!  Instead, I find it an excellent way to rekindle my childhood creativity and make that connection with my younger self. 

Art and animation have been close to my heart for as long as I can remember.  In the past, I would have drafted, created, acted out with voiceovers all sorts of characters from different worlds.  I was obsessed with this space.

It’s a part of me that’s been muffled down over the years for fear of judgement and a yearning to ‘fit in’.  However, the arty creative side still exists within.

I believe there’s others out there who can relate to this.

So, what happens if we strive to push that mental barrier aside and pursued our curiosity? 

That is where the magic happens. 

Each time I draw or animate, an amazing energy within is tuned into.  What I didn’t expect was how intense the experience would be through channelling my creativity through these character filters.

This energy feeds off my ability to be creative, which itself depends on my courage to step out and experiment.  It would be interesting to see over time how it reflects in my training, teaching, and other life interests.  It’s essentially a part of me and who I am.

Two characters appeal the most: Kakashi Hatake, a ninja from the anime Naruto, and Spiderman (who really needs no introduction).  It’s been early days of exploring with these characters, and a recent poll asking Beyond the Dojang Ninjas (aka followers) which one they’d like to see more of has resulted in a close tie.

The result:

So, for now, I’ll experiment a little more before settling on one for some comedy posts.


Well, why not?! 

Explore different things that draw you in and see what it has to teach you on life’s journey. Stay curious.

Carpe diem.

Sabrina Mistry

As a qualified Personal Trainer and 2nd Dan traditional martial artist, Sabrina combines both to deliver workout programmes, martial arts instruction and fitness classes that are designed with the longer-term health of the body in mind. Get connected on Instagram and Facebook: @beyondthedojang

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