The new My Mastery has been released!

My Mastery Cover Page

“My study of this art, from white belt to black, has given me more in the ways of personal growth and self-understanding than I had ever expected.” – Chris Matakas

Dear Readers,

As we have done with my previous books, we wanted to give you a peak inside my newest book, My Mastery: Continued Education Through Jiu Jitsu. Keeping in theme with the original My Mastery, this is a book more about success in life than success in sport. Using the endeavor of skill acquisition as a means of personal growth, this book can be used by all those seeking a more meaningful existence, and is not exclusive to martial artists. I greatly enjoyed writing it, and I hope you enjoy reading it.

With sincerity,

Chris Matakas

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Five Life Lessons My Dad Taught Me Last Week

Me and Dad

Last week, I received voice mail from my Dad, asking me to give him a call back when I had a minute, because he’d been thinking of some things and wanted to talk to me about them.

He had a sort of excitement in his voice.

The same sort of excitement a scientist might have after making a new discovery. Unsure of what to expect, I called him back.

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On The rewards of meditation and the surprising obstacles (It’s not what you think)

On Meditation

The following is a letter I wrote to a dear friend in response to his questions concerning my practices of meditation. Considering that this is becoming a popular method of practicing mindfulness, it is our hope that the topics discussed in this letter could be of use to many of our readers. Enjoy!


First off, let me applaud you for the sincerity with which you have undertaken this endeavor. I have no doubts that you are growing daily because of this pursuit. The farther I go down this road, the more clearly I see that all of life’s joys and woes stem directly from our thinking mind, and our ability to navigate its landscape.

A man who has true control over his thoughts becomes invincible to circumstance.

I have spent a great deal of time meditating over the past 7 years or so, and have given many of its forms due diligence. Truthfully, the type of meditation matters little compared to the sincerity with which it is practiced, and the reasoning for the very practice itself.

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A Poem for Jiu Jitsu

Chris Matakas Mat Pic

Seven short years ago
I began a lover’s quarrel with Jiu Jitsu
As my intentions waned too and fro
I had no idea what this journey would amount to.

I competed and fought
I tore ligaments from finger to knee
The greatest lesson this journey has taught
Is I have the control to decide who I’ll be.

I at once began to learn how to fight
to be able to subdue my fellow man
It wasn’t until I let go of physical might
that I learned all that Jiu Jitsu can.

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How I Found Gratitude in a Bowl of Stew

Bowl of Stew

“This food reveals our connection with the earth. Each bite contains the life of the sun and the earth. The extent to which our food reveals itself depends on us. We can see and taste the whole universe in a piece of bread!”- -Thich Nhat Hanh

It’s true. I found gratitude while eating a bowl of beef stew.

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The Ben Franklin Effect: An Unexpected Way to Build Rapport

Ben Franklin

“He that has once done you a kindness will be more ready to do you another, than he whom you yourself have obliged.” – - Benjamin Franklin

On rare occurrences, life moves in such harmony where it provides you with an experience that prompts you to question why something happened, and then subsequently provides you with the answer the next day. A few days ago, I was lucky enough to experience this phenomenon.

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A Lesson From Socrates

The Death of Socrates

“I am wiser than this man, for neither of us appears to know anything great and good; but he fancies he knows something, although he knows nothing; whereas I, as I do not know anything, so I do not fancy I do.”- Plato’s Socrates

Around 2,400 years ago in ancient Athens, mankind was dealt a humbling blow to our collective self-confidence, and it came by the way of Socrates.

We all know the name Socrates, but few know what he stood for.

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The Real Reason to Earn a Black Belt

Ricardo Almeida Black Belt

“Let no act be done without purpose”- Marcus Aurelius

I have been given the rare opportunity to teach Jiu Jitsu for a living. This is a privilege that I wake up everyday grateful for, and a responsibility that I hold dearly. I understand how rare it is to be employed through a labor you genuinely love, and one which can be used as a vehicle for positive change in the lives of others. Even rarer still, I am often reminded of the quality of Jiu Jitsu I have learned, and the opportunity to have learned it.

Nearly 7 years ago, while working as a strength and conditioning coach, a friend suggested that I try learning Jiu Jitsu at the school right down the road from my house, and it wasn’t until some enlightening years later when I realized the fortune of having that school be led by Ricardo Almeida.

Fast forward to today

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Is Karma Real? The Definitive Answer

Is Karma Real-

“Integrity is doing the right thing, even when no one is watching” -C.S. Lewis

Guys, I solved it!

I finally figured out the answer to a question that has confounded humanity for thousands of years!

Perhaps for those who fundamentally subscribe to the Hindu & Buddhist religions, this question has already been answered, but for the rest of us, it’s still persisted:

Is Karma Real?

And, I, Chad Daniels, have finally answered that question definitively:

It doesn’t matter whether or not Karma is real.

Yes, I said it. That’s not a knock on Buddhism or Hinduism. They may be right, and all of our actions in this life will influence the situation of lives further on. That one, I can’t answer. However, it should not influence the way we act in our day-to-day lives. Why?
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#Human: The Preface

#Human Front Cover


With extreme gratitude we announce the release of my new book #Human: Learning To Live In Modern Times. Very much in line with the ideologies of My Mastery: Learning to Live Through Jiu Jitsu, this book dives straight into the matter of cultivating an amazing life. Traversing the spiritual landscape from seeing through the illusion of self to serving our fellow man, this book is a guide in assisting the reader’s growth toward a self-actualized life. This is the preface of that book, and I hope it finds you well.

Pre-orders for the Ebook are available now on Amazon, and both the Ebook and Paperback will be available on Monday, December 15th.

All of the proceeds from this book will be donated to Feeding America! This means that each Ebook sold will secure and provide 62 meals to those in need, and each and every Paperback will provides 42 meals! Our goal is to use #Human to provide 100,000 meals to those in need!

We are both excited and humbled to be able to serve on such a massive scale, and we sincerely hope that you join us!

All the Best,

Chris Matakas

#Human- Learning to Live in Modern Times


“One does not discover the absurd without being tempted to write a manual of happiness.” – Albert Camus, The Myth of Sisyphus

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