The Most Important Life Lesson From Kill Bill

The-Bride_Hattori-Hanzo-Katana_Kill-BillWhether you want to be a better lover, learn how to cook like a master chef or lose the extra fluff currently engulfing your sexy parts (like the Cave of Wonders in Aladdin), I know you want to improve your life in some way. What’s stopping you?


How do I know? Because we’re the same, you and me. I’ve been there, too. From being petrified of getting on stage and trying to make a crowd of complete strangers pee their pants from laughter, not writing consistently and crying “writer’s block” to abandoning a diet early because I was too hungry, felt like I was losing too much muscle or a hodgepodge of excuses I used to cover up the fact that I was too scared to get it done.

The worst part? I never admitted that I was afraid. I started to believe these excuses. To embody them. To live them.

Each time that I fooled myself into thinking I was a fearless man who simply encountered insurmountable barriers, it became easier to fall into that paradigm the next time.

After years of this vicious cycle, I painfully realized that I wasn’t living the life of my dreams. Not because of anyone else or a lack of opportunities, but because of my own doing.

It broke me. Hard.

Here is the most important advice you’ll ever hear, regardless of what you apply it to: know your real edge and sharpen it relentlessly.

Your edge is the point where you start to back off, to rationalize, to bury yourself in the minutia, to buy into whatever bullshit story soothes your fears and gives you a reason to stop short of absolutely crushing a goal, leveling up your inner badass in the process.

In Kill Bill, Hattori Hanzō was the man. When you needed Japanese steel, a weapon capable of waging a roaring rampage of bloodshed and vengeance without losing stopping power, you called Hanzō. One does not simply create a Hanzō sword, however – such a creation is forged only through consistent, methodical effort and honesty.

Here is how to create your own Hattori Hanzō life blade.

1. Describe your current edge in detail. Example: I know I could be leaner, but I’m too lazy to consistently track my food intake.

2. OWN your current edge, committing to lean slightly into the discomfort each time you encounter it. Lean too far and the resistance encountered will be too great; lean too little and there will be no growth.

“A free man is free to acknowledge his fears, without hiding them, or hiding from them. Live with your lips pressed against your fears, kissing your fears, neither pulling back nor aggressively violating them.” – David Deida

Face your fears, hone your edge and create a life worth living. Don’t sell yourself short.

If you need any help identifying or finding your edge, I’m more than happy to help. Contact me via the contact form on this site.

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  1. says

    I found this inspirational and am now going to take your very appropriate and timely advice (for me) Thank you for writing this! Thanks also to Marianne for directing me to it 🙂

  2. says

    This is the best advice ever put onto a webpostblogmessage.

    Great minds think alike, I believe Stephen Covey’s 1st of the 7 Habits of Highly Kickass Peoples was ‘sharpen the blade’. But you’ve added to it with the concept of recognizing when you’re not actually putting the blade up against the cutting stone.

    Being scared and being lazy must be the same thing.

  3. says

    I must admit that I am guilty for this too. But after reading I’m ready to change that (which is the point of the post I’m sure haha) so thanks!

    Fear holds so many people back. I think a lot of the time we’re too afraid of certain things that should be second nature to us. Go out there and get what’s yours.

    P.S. Kill Bill = great movie.


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