Showing posts from April, 2013

Small vs. Big

S omewhere off the Coast of Mexico An American investment banker was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked.  Inside the small boat were several large yellowfin tuna.  The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them. The Mexican replied, "only a little while." The American then asked why didn't he stay out longer and catch more fish? The Mexican said he had enough to support his family's immediate needs. The American then asked, "but what do you do with the rest of your time?" The Mexican fisherman said, "I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take siestas with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine, and play guitar with my amigos.  I have a full and busy life." The American scoffed, "I am a Harvar

Boston Bombing, Window Seats & Shwarma Sandwiches

  Like most of you I was deeply affected by the news of the recent bombing at the Boston Marathon. With every violent attack that we witness we ask more questions: Why is this happening?  How could someone do something so violent to innocent people including children? How can we recognize this type of a threat when we see it or before it happens? How can we stop the violence? How can we feel safer? Much like when 9/11 occurred I imagine that many of the countries who see violence like this on a more regular basis once again looked at the U.S. and thought, welcome to our world. Not to disrespect or detract from the seriousness (or sadness) of the situation that happened in Boston, but many other countries experience attacks like that or worse on a much more regular basis than seen here in the US. As I thought about these things, it reminded me of the first time I brought in Krav Maga instructor Moshe Katz from Israel a few years back. I picked him up from the airport

Set the Pace

When we think about escalating a situation we often think of assertive or aggressive behavior (yelling at someone who took the parking space you thought was yours, yelling at your kids to go to bed, taking down a non-compliant perpetrator, waging a pre-emptive strike on a hostile nation that is not playing well with others, etc). However, I wanted to open this concept up a little to change our perspective on how we view the idea of escalation. Escalating a situation can also be thought of as energizing it. We can also be filling an (emotional) space with enthusiasm or adding energy to a situation. During an interaction, people typically play off from one another. If you Take the Lead and Set the Pace you can often influence how that interaction goes. As "Man Search For Meaning" Author Viktor Frankl said, "You cannot always determine what happens to you. You do however always have the ability to choose how you respond to it." Ma

Before Self Defense by Moshe Katz

Martial arts tend to focus on techniques. Most martial arts are largely irrelevant to any real life confrontation and even those that are "Reality Based" tend to miss a great deal of what really matters in real life situations.  ~ There is a self defense that begins before self defense. There is a self defense that begins before your first kick, before your first punch or throw or lock. There is a self defense that extends long after your physical means of defense have been exhausted or depleted. It is something beyond technique and beyond the body. It is in the realm of spirit.  ~ I write these words as "Holocaust Day" (Yom HaShoa) is winding down in Israel. On this day Jews and humanitarians all over the world take a day to remember, reflect and honor. We think back to those dark days of World War Two when the Germans were fighting two wars; one against the Allies and the other against the Jews. Of the two the Germans placed priority on the War against t