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Showing posts from December, 2013

Clarity

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"Midlife Crisis is when you get to the top of the Ladder and realize it was leaning up against the wrong wall."

~Joseph Campbell


I remember sitting in front of Davenport College (now Davenport University) alternating between looking up at the sky and reading Clive Barker's Weave World. It was the beginning of an interesting path. A couple years later, still at Davenport College I remember my capstone class for my business degree was an outside sales internship. I HATED it! However I felt as if I'd invested so much of my own and my parents resources how could I turn back? Not to mention I wasn't sure what else to do for a career?! All of my other pursuits (music, security type work, martial arts & travel) I did were not providing a sustainable income, so I continued to follow a path that not only was uninspiring to me, it quite literally made me ill. During that sales internship, it was everything I could do to bring myself to do my required cold calls. The s…

Against The Stream Krav Maga (by Moshe Katz)

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Moshe Katz (Far Left) & I (Craig Gray Far Right) with members of the Yamam  in Jerusalem during the first IKI Tour & Train in 2010
So Tour and Train November 2013 is over, and my friend Athos is one of the last to leave. We are at my house enjoying one last cup of coffee, l'ultimo caffè. When I was in Italy I purchased some Italian coffee, which is now coming in very handy. Athos, as a proud Italian, prefers making Italian coffee. Anything else is a compromise.
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Each morning of Tour and Train Athos prepared us Italian coffee, a little taste of Italy, here in Maaleh Adumim.
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As a new student and as a mature man, Athos offers great insights into martial arts and self defense. I have come to understand why he chose IKI Krav Maga for his training. Athos is a respected researcher and professor at a distinguished Italian university, he is a man trained to notice details and make observations. Through many conversations I have come to appreciate his sensitivity and his awaren…

Bullying Only Begins On The Playground

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I knew that I was screwed even before I opened the door for the meeting. I knew that my sales manager was going to bully me into agreeing on my new sales figures for the upcoming year. The company had a budget in mind which was aggressive or, in my opinion, unrealistic. Our bonus and commission rate was supposed to be an incentive so it was based on our growth, not necessarily on just the final sales numbers.  An interesting over complicated alga-rhythm that felt more like playing the shell game at some shady carney side show than holding a regular job. 


Now don't get me wrong, I know how difficult it can be to motivate people, especially when you are in charge of overseeing a guy like me who was a spirited, independent, go getter, not overly motivated by money and not to mention, (at the time) young, a bit cocky and probably too smart and intuitive for my own good. What was a sales manager to do?

Well, pushing unrealistic sales goals on to someone while telling them pretty much…

Sticks & Stones, Social Contracts & Other Lies Experts Tell Us About Bullying (Part 2)

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Before I begin part 2 of this post I wanted to thank everyone for the overwhelming response I received from Sticks & Stones, Social Contracts & Other Lies Experts Tell Us About Bullying (Part 1). I appreciate all of the good words, support, personal stories and thoughts that people shared with me on-line, in person and privately. People from all over the world and all walks of life seemed to identify with the story: From special ops military, to insurance salesmen; soccer moms to SWAT team members; Federal Marshall's to factory workers, firemen to financial advisers, Teachers to IT professionals, correctional officers, counselors and car salesmen. Men & women of all ages, backgrounds and social groups; straight and gay; it didn't matter. Almost everyone seemed to immediately identify with that story. Why, because many people have stories of their own either personal, someone they knew or a situation they saw in some way.

For those of you who know me better, you kn…