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It’s Not About Breaking the Board: What Entrepreneurs Can Learn From Martial Arts



things you can learn from martial arts
Image Credit: Unsplash

We’ve all seen the videos…a person wearing a white uniform and a black belt stares down their opponent; a stack of boards six inches high. They take a breath in, and — wham! — their bare hand whips down and breaks the stack cleanly in half. The broken boards tumble to the ground, and the breaker walks away triumphant.

I know what you’re thinking. “I’m not powerful enough to do that, forget it! I’ll just watch. Why would I need to break a board, anyway?” You want to laugh it off, to walk away. But have you thought about why you refuse so quickly? Do you ever feel that inkling feeling of curiosity? You know the, “could’ve, should’ve, would’ve” kind of feeling that you instantly shrug off? You’re afraid of pain. You’re worried that people will see you fail. You don’t want to try, because you believe in your heart that you can’t succeed.

That’s the stupidest excuse out there. Stop making excuses in your life! Let me tell you something — I don’t teach students how to break a “board” or “cement block”. I train students to focus beyond the board or block to a goal they want to achieve or a weakness they want to overcome. The board is just an obstacle between you and your goal. Your goal is BEYOND that obstacle.

However, sometimes, our biggest obstacle isn’t a tangible object like a board or block, but rather, it is our MIND that stops us from achieving our goals. Everyone has a “board” in life. It’s the business we want to launch, the career change we wish to explore, the self-expression we desperately want to pursue but haven’t. Pay attention to the negative inner dialogue that stops you from pursuing that goal, and you’ll probably find that it sounds a lot like the voice you hear when you see someone else breaking a physical board. 

“I can’t.” 

“I’m scared.”

“I’m not strong enough to do what they do.”

“Defeat is a state of mind; no one is ever defeated until defeat has been accepted as a reality.” – Bruce Lee

I’ve taught Jung SuWon for years now, practiced it for decades, and I’ve heard every excuse. But the truth is that physical training and career achievement are both more mental battles than physical ones. It’s not about breaking one board, or launching a business, or achieving some personal goal — it’s about being determined enough to face adversity head-on, overcome your inner doubts, and accomplish the impossible. It takes a laser focus to break through a stack of boards or cement blocks. Not everyone does it on the first or second try. It takes the same laser focus to start a company or change your career.

This is what I do with my students and people that I coach and mentor all around the world. When I give them a board to break, I always ask them to write their goals. This is important because again, it’s not about breaking the board, it’s about the entire process of channeling your energy with a laser beam focus by joining body, mind and spirit that will enable you to break the board. Know what you want to accomplish and learn to believe in it 110%. That’s the main focus not just breaking the physical board itself.

Instead of looking at the person breaking the board — or the business founders you admire — and saying, “No, I can’t,” you must think, “He Can Do, She Can Do, Why Not Me!”

I say this because I have experienced firsthand how life-changing this mantra can be. I grew up in a small village in South Korea where I was hated, cursed for being a girl in a culture that prized firstborn boys. Worse, I had no interest in the path that was laid out for me. I had no wish to learn to cook and sew or to get married and have twelve sons as tradition dictated.

I fell in love with martial arts, instead. I remember, as a child, peeking outside to see my uncles practicing in the morning fog, their movements graceful and mesmerizing. I wanted to learn — but they laughed in my face. I was a girl, they said, not allowed to learn such things.

And yet, I did. I insisted and begged until one uncle agreed to teach me. Then, I bore the abuse and blows that rained down on me for doing so. I endured my family’s abuse, my village’s hate. Eventually, I met a teacher who changed my life — a Buddhist monk who agreed to break 5000 years of tradition and teach me the skills I so desperately wanted. After years of dedication, I became the first female grandmaster in Korea’s history.

Since then, I have pursued my dreams wherever they have taken me, overcome poverty, discrimination, and nay-sayers. I moved to America, founded a tech company, and continued to teach martial arts.

All of this, I was able to do by following the teachings of Jung SuWon and this one mantra: “He Can Do, She Can Do, Why Not Me!” 

Here are a few martial arts tips that all entrepreneurs should embrace — even if they never plan to put on a martial art uniform:

1. Learn to Fall

There is no such thing as no-fail learning. Many martial arts disciplines begin with teaching students how to fall safely so that they could get up and start fighting again. I never see my mistakes as a negative. instead, I see them as a learning experience and use them to motivate me to be more creative and thoughtful in my approach.

2. Success is a Mental Battle, Not a Physical One

Stop focusing on what you can’t do. The moment you start believing in negative self-talk is the moment you ruin your chances for success. Like a martial arts student facing a wooden block, you need to think that you can do whatever you set your mind to — otherwise, you’ll only fail and hurt yourself. 

3. Don’t Mimic Someone Else’s Pattern

Excellent fighters adapt their knowledge of form to their needs. Your expression must be your own — you need to be responsive, to go according to your own direction, and not confine yourself to mirroring someone else’s movements or style. If I had remained in my village as my parents wanted, I would never have accomplished what I did. Similarly, if you follow the path someone else wants for you, you will never be able to achieve your potential.

4. Let Your Opponents Motivate You

Fear can be paralyzing. When you’re staring down an opponent, you fear the pain they could inflict upon you — but the only way to succeed in combat and avoid that pain is to confront it and win. In life, there will be countless people who try to put you down and tell you “NO.” When I established my first martial art studio, arsonists who hated me for my differences, burned it to the ground. I was afraid, but I refused to give in to that fear. Let your fear motivate you — use it as a device that allows you to prove every nay-sayer wrong.

You have the power to overcome every obstacle in your path. That power is already IN you. What you do in your life is your personal choice. Have you realized it yet? What are you waiting for? You, too, can break through to awesome, but you have to take action in your life.

Grandmaster Kim (Dr. Tae Yun Kim) is a martial arts grandmaster, Silicon Valley entrepreneur, and inspirational figure who believes in the value of embracing one’s inner power. She is the author of Seven Steps to Inner Power, a book which draws teachings from Grandmaster Kim’s life and experience as a martial arts grandmaster to help readers realize their inner strength and achieve their goals. She is also the preceptor of Jung SuWon, a martial arts discipline that she currently teaches at an eponymous martial arts studio in California.

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10 Lucrative Buy and Sell Businesses to Start in 2024

The buy-and-sell business model provides opportunities across many niches



Businesses to start in 2024

In the dynamic landscape of 2024, starting a business that capitalizes on buy-and-sell models can be incredibly lucrative. This article explores ten different models that entrepreneurs can consider. These ventures range from real estate flipping to trading in domains and luxury items, providing a broad spectrum of opportunities regardless of your initial capital or interest area.

1. Car Flipping

Flipping cars can be a very lucrative business venture for an individual with business acumen, an eye for value, and mechanically adept at cars. It involves buying under-priced cars, restoring, and selling them for a profit. For deeper insights and opportunities in this market, refer to

2. Real Estate Flipping

Flipping real estate—be it houses, condos, or even commercial properties—remains pretty solid business, especially in markets where real estate values are on the way up. Investors buy properties relatively low, do rehab or renovation, then sell at a profit.

The success of the area is endowed with a huge potential spotlight, the ability to juggle various elements such as local real estate market knowledge, and efficient management of renovations.

3. Vintage E-commerce

With the advent of technology, it became easy to sell vintage or retro items over the online selling platform. Be it clothes, furniture, or even collectibles, consumers these days prefer something unique that is eco-friendly and which may have a nostalgia quotient in it. Hence, it brings the opportunity to open an e-commerce shop effectively.

4. Domain Flipping

If you have the skill to predict catchy phrases or business names that would be popular in the future, then buying and selling domain names would be a very profitable business. Register prices are available to purchase domains, which later can be sold at high prices to interested parties or businesses that wish to get an early online identity.

5. Luxury Items

One of the most promising buy-and-sell businesses is the luxury market, and what makes it very attractive is its less sensitivity towards economic downturns. Some of the common items in the luxury market include high-end watches, jewelry, and art, rare cars, all with high yields. Most times, items do appreciate, especially when they are limited editions.

6. Sports Memorabilia

While the sports memorabilia trading business can at times seem lucrative, especially when one focuses on big personae or big events, authenticity and rarity can definitely help items fetch top dollar. Provenance and limited supply both go towards inflating their values.

7. Sneaker Reselling

In recent years, the sneaker resale market has exploded, fueled by a commodity of scarce releases and athletic brand collaborations with a list of celebrities. Today, with operations such as StockX and GOAT, it’s really that easy to break into the worldwide market. It’s pretty easy to find your buyers and make a very good profit if you’re targeting the right trend and releases.

8. Book Flipping

Flipping rare and first editions can become a really meaningful, and yes, one more profitable, business for a book lover. Sometimes the signed ones, rare manuscripts, or those early editions of famous novels could sell for thousands of dollars, usually done by collectors or academic institutions.

9. Furniture Upcycling

Upcycling furniture consists of restoring and using second-hand furniture to sell it at a higher price. For the environmentally aware consumer, this business model has great appeal. It could be pretty profitable if done with good taste and talent in design and restoration.

10. Electronics Flipping

Smartphones, tablets, and laptops resell at values significantly high; hence, business ensues. Buy, refurbish, and sell in better condition to appeal to budget-minded consumers looking for technology at more affordable price points. 

Overall, The buy-and-sell business model provides opportunities across many niches. Be it real estate flipping or vintage item upcycling, you can succeed in both models with market understanding and trend application. That, with careful planning and strategic investment, will throw huge financial returns for these business models in 2024.

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How Your Business Can Outmaneuver Your Competitors by 85%

Did you know that companies that master big data can outmaneuver competitors by 85% in sales



big data strategy

Did you know that companies that master big data can outmaneuver competitors by 85% in sales and more than 25% in gross margins? Sounds inspiring, right? But the thing is that data alone isn’t enough. Rather, it’s the strategy behind it that unlocks these enviable boosts. So, this article explores how to make the most out of your big data and build a strategy that’s functional and competitive. (more…)

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Most Entrepreneurs Fail to Do This and It’s Killing Their Success

Celebrating progress also provides entrepreneurs with the psychological sustenance needed to endure the marathon of building a business



celebrate your milestones

The journey from a mere concept to a tangible reality is one of the most exhilarating yet challenging paths an entrepreneur can navigate. This odyssey is punctuated by milestones that stand as testaments to perseverance, innovation, and relentless hard work.  (more…)

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9 Ways Augmented Reality Gives Your Business a Competitive Edge

By embracing AR technology, companies can unlock new opportunities for growth, innovation, and success



augmented reality in business

Leveraging Augmented Reality for Business Advancement: Exploring Applications

In the ever-evolving landscape of business innovation, Augmented Reality in business emerges as a transformative force, reshaping traditional paradigms and unlocking new opportunities for growth and advancement.

Through a comprehensive examination of AR’s capabilities, applications, and business benefits, this article serves as a roadmap for enterprises seeking to harness the full potential of augmented reality to propel their success in the digital age.

UNI.Agency as a forefront developmental agency tailors unmatched digital products and immersive experiences. They help companies outperform their competitors and customers’ expectations. And now, there is time to delve deep into the AR realm.

Gaining Insight into Augmented Reality

From revolutionizing customer experiences to optimizing operational efficiency, AR in retail is poised to drive significant advancements in how businesses operate and engage with their stakeholders.

Augmented Reality (AR) seamlessly integrates digital information and virtual objects into the real-world environment, offering users an immersive and interactive experience through devices like smartphones or AR glasses.

It revolutionizes various industries, from entertainment to healthcare, by enhancing perception and creating innovative opportunities for engagement and exploration in the digital era. AR not only enriches our understanding of reality but also opens up new possibilities for creativity, communication, and problem-solving, making it a powerful tool for businesses seeking to enhance customer experiences and streamline operations in an increasingly digital world.

Differentiating Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality

Augmented Reality (AR) overlays digital elements onto the real world, enhancing the user’s perception of their environment. Virtual Reality (VR), however, immerses users in entirely virtual environments, blocking out the real world. There are some core differences between these two technologies in gear and display approaches:

  • AR enriches reality with digital information, while VR creates entirely immersive virtual experiences.
  • AR typically requires less specialized hardware, like smartphones or AR glasses, while VR often involves dedicated headsets.
  • AR is commonly used for enhancing real-world experiences, such as in gaming, retail, and navigation, encouraging augmented reality shopping. Whereas VR is primarily employed for immersive simulations, training, and entertainment in fully virtual environments.

The Influence of AR on the Customer Experience Journey

As of 2024, Augmented Reality (AR) has evolved into an indispensable tool across various sectors, offering immersive and interactive experiences that seamlessly blend digital elements with the real world.

Stimulating Interest

Augmented Reality (AR) captivates customers by offering visually engaging experiences that spark curiosity and intrigue, enticing them to explore products or services further.

AR’s ability to overlay digital content onto the real world creates an immersive and attention-grabbing experience, drawing customers in and igniting their interest.

Educating and Empowering Users

AR in business empowers users by providing interactive and informative experiences that educate them about products, services, or concepts in a visually compelling manner.

Through AR, customers can interact with virtual models, animations, or informational overlays, gaining a deeper understanding of the features, benefits, or use cases of the offerings.

Exploring Further Depths

AR encourages customers to delve deeper into products or services by offering immersive and interactive experiences that go beyond traditional marketing materials.

By allowing users to explore virtual representations of products in real-world contexts, AR in retail provides a unique opportunity for customers to visualize how offerings fit into their lives, fostering deeper engagement and understanding.

Business Benefits of Augmented Reality

Businesses utilize AR for diverse applications, including product visualization, virtual try-ons, and enhanced customer engagement. In education, AR transforms learning experiences by providing interactive simulations and visualizations.

Additionally, AR has become integral to industries such as healthcare, where it facilitates surgical training and patient education. With advancements in AR technology and widespread adoption, it continues to shape how we perceive and interact with our environment, ushering in a new era of innovation and connectivity.

Let’s look at why AR has become so indispensable as a business tool nowadays.

Revolutionizing Training Methods

AR in business transforms training by offering immersive, interactive simulations that replicate real-world scenarios, enhancing employee learning and skill development.

It’s lucrative for hands-on training experiences. Since there’s no need for physical equipment or environments, reducing costs and logistical constraints while improving knowledge retention and performance.

Boosting Productivity Levels

Augmented Reality in business boosts productivity by providing real-time access to information and guidance, allowing employees to complete tasks more efficiently and accurately.

Through AR-powered tools and applications, workers can streamline workflows, troubleshoot issues, and collaborate effectively, resulting in increased output and operational efficiency.

Implementing Dynamic Marketing Approaches

AR enables businesses to implement dynamic marketing strategies that captivate and engage audiences in unique ways.

By integrating AR into marketing campaigns, companies can create interactive experiences that drive brand awareness, customer engagement, and sales conversions, setting themselves apart in a crowded marketplace.

Fostering Product Development

Augmented reality and marketing foster innovation in product development by facilitating virtual prototyping, design iterations, and collaborative decision-making.

With AR, teams can visualize and test product concepts in 3D, gather feedback from stakeholders, and make informed design decisions faster, leading to faster time-to-market and more successful product launches.

Creating Tailored Customer Experiences

AR creates personalized customer experiences by allowing users to interact with products and services in customized ways.

Through AR-enhanced applications and experiences, businesses can tailor content, recommendations, and promotions to individual preferences and behaviors, enhancing customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Amplifying Brand Recognition

Augmented Reality shopping amplifies brand recognition by providing memorable and shareable experiences that leave a lasting impression on customers.

By incorporating AR into branding initiatives, companies can create immersive brand experiences that spark conversations, increase social media engagement, and strengthen brand loyalty, ultimately driving business growth and success.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, Augmented Reality in business stands as a transformative force, offering a multitude of benefits across various aspects of operations. From revolutionizing training methods to boosting productivity levels, AR empowers businesses to thrive in an increasingly competitive environment.

By embracing AR technology, companies can unlock new opportunities for growth, innovation, and success, while delivering immersive and engaging experiences that resonate with customers and stakeholders alike.

As AR continues to evolve and integrate into everyday business practices, Uni will incorporate the best practices to promote business advancement and drive meaningful change for the clients. We’re to shape the future of commerce to your benefit.

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